Two decades after the creation of the redevelopment plans for Syntagma Square, the Greek capital square will finally be renovated.
The city of Athens announced it after the city council voted for the sustainable overhaul of the square on Monday, July 19.
Although the renovation begins in August 2021, internationally renowned professor Dimitris Manikas created the design plans in 1999 when he entered an architectural competition. Its main objective was to improve mobility and start tackling the climate crisis.
Syntagma Square will be sustainably modernized taking into account the needs of all road users:
Traffic lanes will be reduced from 6 to 4 to increase road safety and reduce noise and pollution levels.
Sidewalks will be widened to provide more space and comfort for pedestrians.
The infrastructure will be upgraded to reflect the needs of people with disabilities, as ramps will be installed for ease of use.
Transport specialist George Giannis commented on the need for such an intervention, noting:
âThe widening of the pedestrian zone in Syntagma Square is an important first step towards the recovery of public space and sustainable urban mobility in the center of Athens, which should have been implemented some time ago.
Pedestrians will have more room to stand and move around, passengers on multiple buses will be able to drop off passengers without having to pass between illegally parked taxis.
The traffic will circulate better, because there will be no more room for the illegal stops of a few cars and taxis to the detriment of the greatest number.
In addition to this, the climate crisis will also be taken into account and addressed as 28 trees will be planted. These trees will not only increase the attractiveness of the square, but also provide shade for pedestrians. Installing pergolas will also create shade for the hot summer months.
With these interventions, the City of Athens hopes to revive Syntagma Square. In addition, it seeks to create a sustainable and green urban environment that will increase the quality of life of its citizens.