Sunday drivers in for relief

Construction work at Kakia Skala on the Athens-Corinth national highway was completed yesterday, two years behind schedule and with a price tag almost double the original estimate. The 7.5-kilometer stretch of newly built road on the Athens-bound side of the highway, which includes two tunnels, cost 123 million euros more than originally budgeted. In 2000, the tender signed for the road included a cost of 176 million euros. The project is expected to help ease the massive traffic problems afflicting the area each weekend as Athenians head back from their trips south of the capital. «This project will be enjoyed by passengers in the 70,000 vehicles that return to Athens every Sunday in summer,» said Environment Minister Giorgos Souflias. Transport experts believe that the new road will help increase traveling speeds to 120 kilometers per hour from 60 kilometers per hour currently.