As local politicians in Athens bicker over the placement of a statue of Alexander the Great in front of City Hall on Kotzia Square, and the residents of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia?s capital Skopje gaze upon their own 24-meter effigy of the Macedonian warrior, the regions of Pella, Imathia and Pieria in northern Greece have teamed up in a program aimed at promoting the legacy of Alexander the Great in their region by developing a network of museums and monuments.
The network will be promoted as a unified destination of archaeological interest called ?At the Roots of Alexander the Great,? and will include the sites of Aeges-Vergina, Dion, Ancient Pella, the School of Aristotle, the burial site of the kings of Macedon, the Ancient Theater of Mieza and others.
The initiative, which marks a collaboration between the municipalities of Veria, Dion-Olympus, Naoussa and Pella, is, according to Naoussa Mayor Anastasios Karabatzos — whose idea it was originally — ?forms an arch on the periphery of Thessaloniki that will certainly play a significant role in the present and future of northern Greece and the Balkans.?
The Alexander project is the first step in a more expansive endeavor that is to create an even broader network with protected status encompassing all of the important archaeological and historical sites in the region, which will, according to Karabatzos, provide a much-needed boost to the local economy.
The project is being developed and carried out under the supervision of the Ministry of Culture.