Syros locals seek to save isle’s architectural legacy


Residents of Syros have launched a campaign to save dozens of the Aegean island’s famed listed neoclassical-style buildings which are in danger of collapse and convince the Environment and Culture ministries to take action.

The new initiative started with a Facebook page which within two weeks registered 1,300 members. It is supported by all the island’s professional and commercial associations, which bemoan the increasingly poor state of many abandoned buildings.

“We need a helmet to walk in our city. Chunks of plaster, even entire walls, fall every day from abandoned buildings,” said Haris Vekris, head of the initiative. “The situation has reached the point of no return.”

Activists want authorities to address delays and problems in the issuance of building permits that essentially prevent anyone interested from repairing a listed building, leaving dozens in poor condition or on the brink of collapse.