NEWS

Patience: In just two months, many of the Olympic transport projects will be up and running

The new arterial roads of Attica will start emerging from the dust, traffic congestion and potholes in mid-June, after nearly three nerve-wracking years dominated by non-stop worksites. Athens’s public transport network will be unrecognizable. Here’s what to expect, in detail. KIFISSOS: The new 7-kilometer (4.3 miles) Kifissou arterial road, which extends the Athens-Lamia National Road to the south coastal road, should be ready for use in early July. The road is being built above the bed of the Kifissos river and, despite the irretrievable damage done to the quality of life for residents on either side, it should provide a solution by carrying more than 200,000 vehicles a day in each direction. The road terminates in the largest split-level interchange in Greece, which will channel traffic to and from Piraeus, Glyfada and Pireos Avenue. MARATHONOS: Marathonos Avenue, which is an ordeal for drivers, is under intensive construction and due for completion in July. The original contractor went bankrupt, but the worksites have become busy again along this road where the Olympic marathon is to be run. VARI-KOROPI: Works on widening the Vari-Koropi road are due to finish in late June, ahead of schedule. Most of the work on the 11-kilometer (7 miles) road has been done, though the vital first kilometer at Vlahakia remains to be completed. That should be ready in 40 days, and drivers would be wise to avoid that stretch in the meantime as it will be difficult to navigate. ATTIKI ODOS: The final section of Attiki Odos should be ready by June 20th, probably at a higher toll rate. The last 3 kilometers (2 miles) of the road will link the Doukissis Plakentias interchange with the Hymettus ring road, and the main artery of Attiki Odos with Marathonos and Mesogeion avenues. TRAM: Trams will re-enter the life of the city in early July, though with some breaks in their routes. Traveling at 24kph (15mph), tramcars will leave Neos Cosmos metro station for the Peace and Friendship Stadium and for Glyfada city hall. They are scheduled to run every four minutes in rush hour. METRO: There will be some extensions of Attiko Metro lines by the time of the Olympic Games. Though it is being delivered later than originally announced, the extension of Line 2 to Alexandros Panagoulis Station at Aghios Dimitrios will be ready in June, and a few days later the same line will be extended in the opposite direction from Sepolia to Aghios Antonios. The extension of Line 3 from Ethniki Amyna to Halandri and Doukissis Plakentias stations and from there to the airport via the suburban railway will be ready in July. The northward extension of the metro is probably the most important part of the network so far because it will ease pressure on the present Ethniki Amyna terminus and, above all, it will be the first direct link between the airport and the center of Athens and the port of Piraeus, Once the extension is operating, the trip from Syntagma to the airport will take 27 minutes, while the trip from the airport to Piraeus by the metro and the ISAP electric railway will take less than an hour.