The Infrastructure Ministry invites newly elected mayors and regional governors to evaluate infrastructure projects
The Infrastructure Ministry invites newly elected mayors and regional governors to evaluate infrastructure projects

The Infrastructure Ministry invites newly elected mayors and regional governors to evaluate infrastructure projects

Call of the Ministry of Infrastructure to local rulers to proceed with the projects under development.
RE+D magazine

The political leadership of the ministry addressed an invitation to the newly elected mayors and regional governors of the country to sit in dialogue with the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport without politicization and confrontations in order to advance the projects that are in progress, in the context of a press conference, where a quarterly report on the projects under development was presented.

In particular, as the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure and Transport Nikos Tachiaos said, the Ministry's intention and immediate concern is to discuss with the new local rulers, so that the ongoing projects can "proceed on time and be finished properly". In fact, he did not fail to mention specific ongoing projects, such as line 4 of the Athens metro, the flyover in Thessaloniki, the BOAK in Crete, but also the projects in Thessaly, which was affected by the disasters, where, as he noted, the interventions must to be immediate and absolutely effective.

He also underlined that we must show the necessary respect to the citizens and the projects by continuing them, as the Prime Minister himself has indicated. "We need to give strength to the fact that we should no longer waste our time in politicizing projects or in confrontations which, until today, have proven to bring most problems and in the end cost the Greek people as well, but also of course, not they allow the immediate performance of solutions", he said characteristically.

In fact, as Minister Christos Staikouras commented, "it is obvious that you have to discuss with the Local Government when you respect it, while he announced that in the next period he will call to discuss the course and continuation of the projects with the heads of the SYRIZA and PASOK sectors- KINAL.

Tolls -Varymbobi Bridge

Until the end of the year we will not see increases in toll prices, said the Deputy Minister responsible for Infrastructure Nikos Tachiaos, saying that the concessionaires are aware of the reality, they understand the problems that have occurred in the country (catastrophic floods). They have not raised the issue of a resumption of indexation after the events in Thessaly. The country is in a state where such issues cannot be raised."

For 2024, as Mr. Tachiaos mentioned, it will obviously be a matter of discussion but due to the situation there will be no intention of demanding a cumulative increase. Regarding the issue of tolls in Varybompi, it is an issue that must be discussed with the new municipal authority.

Regarding the Bridge in Varybombi, the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure said that it is an aging infrastructure and, in fact, after relevant studies, structural issues affecting the health of the bridge have been recorded. As assured by the Ministry, the Bridge of Varybombi is not an infrastructure that is dangerous to fall , however, interventions must be launched immediately, as the will of the leadership of the Ministry is to proceed immediately with what is required and to provide a definitive solution. "The bridge should be rebuilt or demolished regardless of whether tolls are introduced," Mr Tahiaos said.

However, on this issue, the Ministry of Infrastructure estimates that in 2024, it will restart the consultation with the newly elected local rulers, as they emerged from the self-governing elections, so that there is a definitive solution. It is noted that the concession contract of the "Nea Odos" company, which manages the PATHE highway, expires in 2038 and until then and for each year the Greek public, in this case the Ministry, pays the amount of 25 million per year to the concessionaire company for absconders profits, due to non-compliance with the provisions of the contract for the existence of toll stations.

Railway operation

In 18 months from today, the full re-operation of the railway that suffered enormous damage from the bad weather Daniel is estimated, while until then the trains will run on a single line, probably from November 20, initially the commercial ones, as there is already a serious problem related to the transport of products and later also passengers.

"It's an opportunity to build better infrastructure," said Infrastructure Minister Christos Staikouras, pointing out that the goal is to further strengthen the Greek railway, reforming the Greek train from the ground up. The reform of the Greek railway is part of the Ministry's strategy, even after the new difficulties that have recently arisen.

"We have signed a contractual agreement with the OSE, which foresees a significant increase in annual funding from 45 million euros to 75 million euros, in order for the Organization to implement the required interventions for the better operation of the trains, setting, at the same time, a supervisory framework , accountability and measurable results on the part of OSE", said Christos Staikouras in this regard. In the Ministry, a committee was established and formed, consisting of the involved agencies to support the modernization of the railway sector. And while the restoration projects of the Greek railway - which related to the 717 contract and the ETCS automatic braking systems were completed within schedules, as the Minister mentioned in this regard, unfortunately the need to resettle in areas affected - by Daniel - arose.

Promotion of green and smart mass transport

For her part, the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure and Transport, responsible for Transport Christina Alexopoulou emphasized that our main goal is, from the beginning, the promotion of green and smart mass transport.

Regarding the development of green transport, as he said, electrification plays a leading role, which is implemented through 4 main programs:

  • I move electrically II
  • Green taxis
  • I charge everywhere
  • e-Astypalea

For the renewal of the bus fleet, the deputy minister referred to the supply of 1,300 new vehicles with anti-pollution technology, for Athens and Thessaloniki, by the end of the four years. The first 250 electric buses will start rolling out in about 6 months from now. Another 400 new buses - electric and natural gas - will be released by 2025. For the supply of the remaining 650 buses, the tender is being prepared with the aim of announcing it in the first half of 2024. Finally, Deputy Minister Ms. Alexopoulou also referred to the update of the National Strategy Road Safety Plan Greece 2030, which, among other things, aims to reduce the number of road accident victims by 50% by 2030. We are working on proposals for the new Road Safety Law, improvements to the KOK, the National Road Safety Observatory and the National Road Safety Communication Policy.