NEWS

Nikos P. Kazeros, architect

The Games caused much to be built in an urgent hurry. And urgency trails in its wake excess, violations, shortcomings and the sheerly irrational. The situation imposed time limits on works, whether small or large, thus setting new parameters for the city. I refer to the sudden change in scale – not just in the Athens basin or Mesogeia but in almost all of Attica, as the city as seen through satellite images. Also, the fact is that many districts in Athens remained untouched – resembling nothing so much as silent observers – while swifter transport within Attica allows people to bypass or avoid an area. And finally, many of the new venues were not accompanied by local planning. What will happen to the city? Two things seem to be the case: The first is the spread of infrastructure and building, while, on the other hand, intermediate areas seem to be suspended in between. We do not know if the short-lived dynamics created in Athens will outlast the Games or will come to an end when the festive whirl is over. I also wonder if the different urban situation about which we speak today will affect residents, their relationship with the city, and their relationship with public space.