Gallery to be picture perfect

A Culture Ministry council has given the final approval to the architectural plans to overhaul and expand the National Gallery in Athens, which means that the revamped building could be ready by 2013, sources said yesterday. All the plans for the project have now been given the green light and 30 million euros in European Union funding has been earmarked. The tender is due to be launched in January so that work can begin in April. The aim of the project is to create more exhibition space for the National Gallery, which houses more than 15,000 works of art, as well as better facilities for visitors in a more contemporary environment. The current building, which was designed by Pavlos Milonas and Dimitris Fatouros and built in the 1960s, will not be demolished. Instead, the revamp aims to create a third floor and underground exhibition space.