NEWS

Maintenance and management issues still outstanding

A consortium of four of the largest construction companies in the country won the tender. The total cost – for the construction of the houses, network systems and green spaces – amounted to approximately 270 million euros. The Workers’ Housing Organization (OEK), which is the major funding body for the project, has already incurred costs of 72.68 million euros for appropriating the land for the overall project, while another 52.824 million euros were spent on such necessities as constructing the green spaces, sport installations, schools, fire stations and the Polyclinic – all funded mainly by the ministries. Already by September 2004, the month following the Athens Olympics, the then vice president of OEK, G. Felonis, had publicly expressed his anxiety over delays in installing infrastructure and school equipment, and in school staffing, maintenance and operation of the sports facilities and all activities in the International (commercial) Zone. The issues of maintenance and management should have already been solved by that time so that the houses could be delivered and the owners take up residence in a fully functional town. He also considered the risk of empty houses being looted, which had happened to OEK residences in Menidi in 1989. For this reason he proposed that Olympic Village SA undertake the study, monitoring and provision of support services. «This company could have taken on extra technical staff and maintained and managed the communal facilities and commercial zone for the first few years.»