NEWS

Olympia to be ready by 2004

Restoration of monuments at ancient Olympia will be finished by the 2004 Olympic Games despite the tight schedule, according to the Culture Ministry. «Work on the archaeological site is on a major scale and is very important. Although time is of the essence, we will have it ready by then,» Minister Evangelos Venizelos yesterday told the UN General Assembly. «We are on schedule but we can’t afford to waste a single day,» Ministry Secretary-General Lina Mendoni told the Central Archaeological Council this week. The old archaeological museum, vacated following earthquake damage, will reopen in September 2003 as the Olympic Games Museum. The new archaeological museum is expected to be refurbished by March 2004. The only project that will have to wait until after 2004, said Venizelos, is the restoration of the 110-meter-long retaining wall protecting the treasuries at the foot of the the Hill of Kronos. The wall has been shifted about half a meter by roots of large trees.