NEWS

Piraeus street, transport networks to undergo major shakeup from Feb. 23

Major changes to the street network in the port city of Piraeus will go into effect on February 23 as construction gets under way for extensions to the metro and tram, municipal authorities said yesterday.

Several major thoroughfares, including Grigoriou Lambraki, Vassileos Georgiou A and Iroon Ploytechniou, will become one-way and a number of bus lanes will be installed in the bustling city center as part of a general overhaul of its transportation network.

The changes to the street network are expected to be completed by March 16, paving the way for construction to commence on the extension of the tram line from the Peace and Friendship Stadium in Neo Faliro to the port of Piraeus. The tram will run on a circular route through the city center of 5.4 kilometers and 12 stops within eight minutes. This part of the project is scheduled for completion in early 2016. It is expected to serve some 35,000 commuters a day and to contribute to a drop in car numbers by some 15,000 in the center.

The extension of the Athens metro's Line 3 to the port city of more than 160,000 residents is slated for completion in 2017 and is expected to serve an average of 132,000 passengers on a daily basis. It will also create a much-needed direct underground link between the country's biggest port and the capital's international airport.

Meanwhile, parts of the ISAP electric railway, dating from 1896, will be rerouted to run underground to free up street space.

Another measure that will come into effect in the next few months is controlled parking in the city center and the opening of underground parking garages.

Municipal authorities are due to meet with representatives of local businesses next week to discuss the changes and address concerns regarding their impact on trade in the city center.

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