- Athens: The Transformation of a Mediterranean Metropolis. Problems and Perspectives after the Olympics 2004    click here to open paper content402 kb
by    Beriatos, Elias | beriatos@otenet.gr   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
The paper investigates the influence that urban projects implemented on the occasion of the Olympic games of 2004 in Athens, have had in the transformation of the Greek capital as an emerging metropolitan centre in the Mediterranean.
Athens: The transformation of a Mediterranean Metropolis.
Problems and perspectives after Olympics 2004

During the last ten years the metropolitan area of Athens, has been the place of a tremendous urban development mostly due to the preparation of Olympic games of 2004. In this regard, great efforts have been made, focused, on the one hand, on the successful organization of the games, and on the other on the over all restructuring and reshaping of the city.

During this period of time more than 65 urban and architectural projects have been lunched in order to solve traffic and environmental problems, to improve quality of life for all inhabitants, increase competence within international economic milieu and achieve sustainability.In particular these projects are a) ‘conventional’ projects concerning the improvement of functional dimension of urban space (new metro and tramway network, express ways, interventions embellishing open public spaces ect) , b) Projects aiming at the enhancement of the built heritage such as conservation of historic buildings, integration and unification of monuments and archeological sites of the city center in combination to a network of pedestrian roads in order to create a ‘cultural’ itinerary in the heart of the city) c) Projects based on an innovative design of space at architectural or urban scale.

In this framework and provided the urban development practices established in Greek cities during the post war period, the main question which is raised today is the following: Will those implemented projects –on the occasion of Olympics- be strong enough to influence traditional political and cultural attitudes and serve as an antidote to the socio- economic fragmentation of Athens? This paper is trying to answer to this question by examining the utilization of the new infrastructures and installations (after the games) and formulating suggestions for the Greek capital taking into account its role in Mediterranean Region in the near future.
Athens, urban transformation, Mediterranean metropolis
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