The revamping of a 60-hectare stretch of Athensís southern coast moved a step closer Thursday as Environment Minister Yiannis Maniatis approved the environmental parameters for the 230-million-euro project, paving the way for a tender to be launched.
If there are no new delays, the tender is expected to be announced later this year and the regeneration project is slated to be completed within two to three years. The numerous delays in getting the scheme off the ground had led to the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF), which is building a cultural center next to the area that will be redeveloped, expressing complaints earlier this year.
Since then Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has been personally involved in pushing the major revamp of the Faliro seafront along.
The work, which will take place between the Moschato and Kallithea seafronts will involve moving busy Poseidonos Avenue 90 meters closer to the sea and lowering the road by 3 meters so it passes through tunnels, thereby allowing a physical link between the sea and the southern suburbs to be created.
The area will be split into five thematic zones (such as sports or culture) which will be divided by pedestrian walkways that will reach piers extending into the sea. Greenery will be planted and there will be scope for commercial and leisure activities.
The cultural center being built by the SNF will house the National Opera and National Library.