Modern monuments are turned over to cultural use

A selected number of historical monuments in the city of Thessaloniki have been under the aegis of the Ministry of Culture and will be ceded for use as cultural venues, according to a recent majority ruling of the Central Council for Modern Monuments. The first of the buildings discussed in the ruling was the former Fix brewery complex, which will be bought by the Ministry of Culture or be subject to forced expropriation. The former Red Cross building in the city will be donated to the ministry, according to the ruling of the council, which also decided to designate 15 former military buildings in Kodra, Kalamaria, as historical monuments. The Fix industrial complex, which has been left to fall into complete disrepair over the past 10 years ever since it was listed for preservation, has been characterized by the council as «the most important monument of the city’s, and the country’s, modern industrial heritage.» A part of the complex belongs to the National Bank of Greece, while another large section of it was bought by private investors. For the entire complex to pass into the hands of the Ministry of Culture it remains to decide the nature and process of the sale or expropriation. The historic villa on Vassileos Olgas Avenue, which in 1997 housed the headquarters of the «Thessaloniki, European Capital of Culture» organization, has also been bequeathed to the Culture Ministry, on the condition that «the Ministry of Culture will have no financial commitment to the donor, while the use of the building and the courtyard will be for cultural events and the necessary auxiliary services.»