A long-delayed extension of the Athens metro’s line 2 is virtually complete with two new stations – Peristeri and Anthoupoli – due to open early next month on Line 2, which currently terminates at Aghios Antonios in the capital’s northwest.
Some 75,000 commuters are expected to use the new stations daily, with the journey to central Syntagma Square estimated to take just 11 minutes.
Works on the 1.5-kilometer extension from Aghios Antonios to Anthoupoli started in September 2006 but their progress was hampered by practical problems.
The spot originally chosen for the Anthoupoli station, opposite the Aghios Ierotheos soccer stadium, turned out to be inappropriate due to the infirmity of the ground, obliging contractors to choose another site a few blocks away.
Infirm foundations also posed a problem in the construction of Peristeri station, according to the head engineer overseeing the project, Costas Kondylis, who said the proximity of a local church also created difficulties.
“We had to check the impact of our work on the surface two or three times a day,” Kondylis said.
On the Anthoupoli site, the main problem was the lack of space.
“It was so cramped that the tunnel-boring machines were scraping against the balconies of adjacent apartment blocks when they were being positioned,” the senior engineer said.