by    Mitoula, Roido & Patargias, Panagiotis & Abeliotis, Konstadinos | mitoula@hua.gr   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
Athens, faced in the past with a lot of problems of atmospheric pollution, is preparing to host the summer Olympic Games of 2004. The aim of this paper is to present an update on the efforts of Athens to shift its transportation means towards a more environmentally friendly direction
Transportation is the major source of atmospheric pollution in urban areas, causing a lot of negative health impacts on the residents as well as to the natural and building environment. Athens, in the early eighties, faced a lot of problems with the smog formation. A major breakthrough towards addressing this problem was the partial renewal of the transportation fleet in 1992. However, since over a decade passed from that point, the average age of the fleet in Greece is 10.2 years, well above the average EU age of 7.3 and it continues to rise.

Athens is now preparing to host the summer Olympic Games of 2004 and the need to resolve the problems related to its atmosphere is urgent. On the other hand, the daily transfer of thousands of athletes, journalists, spectators is a complex challenge and it will in large determine the success of the Games.

The major efforts are focused in three areas: a) increasing the road network in the greater Athens area, b) creating an extended train infrastructure, and c) improving the environmental performance of the current transportation means.

The road network of the greater Athens area has been increased in the last 2 years, mainly due to introduction of Attica Road, which runs from East to West connecting the heavily industrial area in the west of Attica to the new international airport in the east. Along this major highway there are a lot of the Olympic sites and stadiums.

The train infrastructure consists of:
The existing electricity-powered surface train
The newly introduced metropolitan subway (Metro) of Athens
The suburban railway which is still under construction

In addition there are efforts to improve the environmental performance of the public transportation buses: Already, 600 buses, serving the greater Athens area, run on natural gas. Moreover, the dedicated bus lanes network is extended.
transportation, Athens, Olympics
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