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State seeks private partner for new KTEL coach terminal

By Nikos Roussanoglou

The creation of a new terminal for KTEL intercity coaches to all destinations in Greece in the western Athens district of Elaionas, a plan which the Development Ministry is keen to implement, is set to generate significant interest from several Greek property development and construction groups.

The plan was first tabled several years ago, but the ministry is determined to breathe new life into it, as statements by Minister Costis Hatzidakis showed last week: He said that a draft bill is in the pipeline for the start of 2013, providing for the necessary procedures (such as town planning) to start.

This will likely result in expressions of interest from a series of companies in the next few weeks, as the complex project is expected to be implemented in the form of public-private partnership (PPP). The ministry wants to have the new terminal up and running within two years.

The new KTEL station constitutes an investment of an estimated 120 million euros, with the duration of the concession contract to the private partner ranging between 35 and 40 years.

The terminal will host the services currently handled by the existing KTEL stations on Kifissos Avenue and Liosion Street, both in western Athens, too.

Kathimerini expects a healthy degree of interest from property development companies due to the fact that besides the new coach terminal, which will cover a surface area of 38,500 square meters, the investment will likely include the operation of commercial stores totaling 11,000 sq.m. in order to provide an offsetting benefit for the private investors who will be chosen to fund the project.

Also foreseen is the creation of free-access green spaces totaling 29,000 sq.m., while some 1,500 sq.m. will host spaces of cultural interest and there will be a 480-vehicle parking area. The plot that has been selected is close to 90,000 sq.m., with 50 percent of that destined for the KTEL station itself and the rest for the development of commercial and green spaces.

The states contribution to the project will concern the concession of land, while the private investor, in cooperation with the KTEL consortiums, will undertake the construction and operation of the new station.

Notably, the creation of the new terminal station will go a long way toward decongesting the districts where the existing KTEL terminals are based. It is further expected to boost KTELs popularity and passenger traffic, as the new terminal will be served by the Elaionas metro station and be close to major city thoroughfares such as Iera Odos and Petrou Ralli.

The terminal will also be very close to the plot conceded to the Babis Vovos construction company for the creation of a new shopping center, which is only 75 percent complete as the firm has filed for bankruptcy.

ekathimerini.com , Monday December 17, 2012 (22:38)  
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