Eco-neighborhoods : Where are we in Greece ?

On the occasion of  "World Environment Day 2012", the Greek-French and international SDMed Association ( together with Panteion University-Laboratory of strategic spatial planning and sustainable development, supported by the Association of Citizens " Paremvassi" ( organised in Athens, a public debate entitled " Econeighborhoods - Green neighborhoods:where are we in Greece? "

At the Roundtable, held at the Foundation Michalis Kakogiannis, 206, Pireos Street, Athens, on Thursday, June 7, 2012 from 18.00h-21.00h, were involved:
• Giannis Polyzos, Professor, National Technical University of Athens, former Chairman of the   Athens Master Plan Organisation
• Spyros Pollalis, Professor at Harvard University, President of SA Elliniko
• Margarita Karavassili, Architect - Urban Planner, Special Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Energy and climate change.
• Stella Kyvelou, Architect - Planner, Assistant Professor, Panteion University of Athens, President of  SDMed

The Roundtable discussion was moderated by Pericles Vassilopoulos, Journalist, Vice President of the association of citizens "Paremvassi" and the event was opened by Professor Ismini Kriari, Vice Rector of   Panteion University of Athens.The text of the communication of the event is as follows:

"BedZED, Rackheath, Hammarby, ΒΟ 01 (Malmo), Kronsberg, Vesterbro, Kolding, Mata de Sesimbra, Enternucleos, Faenza, Dunkirk, Lille, Douai, Le Havre, Nanterre, Limeil-Brevannes, Rennes, Angers, Nantes, Poitiers, Mulhouse, Chalon-sur-Saone, Lyon, Grenoble, Echirolles, Narbonne ........ European territory tends to be a major innovative urban environmental site    nowadays ! The speed of  designing and implementing  eco-neighborhoods is today unprecedented!  Sustainable development founds finally its ideal operational application on the territory... ... The themes and options are varied and extremely interesting : alternative means of transport,   limitation of   of private cars, low energy buildings,  zero energy or even positive energy buildings, use of rainwater, green materials, urban and social mix, combination with social housing projects, promotion of sustainable lifestyles in general ...

Eco-neighborhoods are everywhere exemplary   urban projects, promoted by their communities as "vitrines" of technical know-how and sustainability related action and as tools of communication both nationally and internationally .....

And we,  in the Mediterranean and particularly in Greece, where are we?

• Is it, first of all, possible and useful to create an eco-neighborhood policy, in the context of the economic crisis and current recession?
• Who will take the initiative for these exemplary projects, which institution will be responsible for coordinating and implementing such steps?
• Are there already relevant appropriate tools or instruments or should we invent new?
• What lessons can be learned from the up to date small scale pilot attempts  ?
• Can  these "eco-developments  become engines for sustainable urban development and construction of sustainable housing of low or moderate cost?
• Could   eco-neighborhood projects also be a solution for the development of public land and for building housing for low-income households?
• Can   eco-neighborhoods offer an opportunity for the renewal of the urban fabric and   increase of green space, especially in Athens, but also for the renewal of the "brand name" both for   Athens  and for our secondary cities as well ?
• What instruments and tools, either political or economic and financial engineering, could countries, regions and cities of Greece  use to implement such ecodevelopment projects?
• What impact will have Econeighborhoods on the real estate market,   undoubtedly related to the production of "green value"?
• Which could be the best tool for planning and assessment of an greek econeighborhood  ?
The event will bring together every stakeholder who can make it happen: universities, research centers, central government and local authorities, developers, representatives of civil society .. "

For more information, please contact : Panteion University, Ms. Martina Kalokairinou, Tel: 0030 210-9221066 and 0030 210-9236206, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  .

The event was fully recorded by the Bodossakis Foundation (