Athens Mayor eyes business ‘clusters’

Athens Mayor eyes business ‘clusters’

The City of Athens is considering developing business “clusters” in the capital as part of a scheme to help local businesses benefit from its Grand Walk initiative, a network of pedestrianized streets and bicycle lanes, Mayor Kostas Bakoyannis said on Friday. 

In a meeting with Athens business owners, Bakoyannis set out the findings of a study targeting six areas where the development of such clusters is regarded as the most potentially fruitful. The areas are: Kolonaki for its clothing retailers, bars and eateries, Omonia for its specialist food stores, Plaka-Monastiraki for its folk art stores and tavernas, Exarchia for its bookshops and cafes, the so-called commercial triangle for its leather goods retailers and restaurants, and Patission-Kypseli for its clothing stores and eateries. 

“This is not just a revamp but a product we can use,” Bakoyannis said, adding that the idea is not to turn the center into a theme park but to oversee the development of existing businesses. It was unclear how the clusters would function, but business representatives reportedly welcomed the idea as long as access to the city center for citizens and tourists is secured. 

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