Hellenikon park plans rethought

Plans by the previous government to hand over to developers a large chunk of a park planned on the site of the old Athens airport may be axed, Public Works Minister Giorgos Souflias said yesterday. His comments were made on the same day the ministry announced the winners of an international competition for the design of the new park under the controversial specifications laid down by the Socialist government – which had promised to create «the biggest metropolitan park in Europe.» Under these, 100 of the park’s 530 acres were to be developed for housing, offices, shops, business centers and leisure activities covering a total of 1 million square meters. Yesterday, Souflias said the new government is not bound to develop part of the old airport. «There may be no development at all,» he said, «and the entire area will become a park. In any case, if there is development, it will not exceed that planned by the previous government.» He said decisions would be made following talks with the neighboring municipalities.

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