Parliament Approval Next Key Step for Greece’s Hellinikon Project
One of the most ambitious projects in Greece, the mega Hellinikon investment at Athens’ former airport in the southern suburbs on the coast, moves closer to implementation after Greek parliament ratified this week the contract transferring partial ownership of area at the former airport site to Greek developer Lamda Development, paving the way for works to begin.
“The development of Hellinikon will commence once the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund (HRADF) transfers the shares in Hellinikon SA, which has the right to develop the Metropolitan Pole, to the investors,” said the company on the project’s official site.
The announcement goes on to add that “this transfer depends on a series of conditions which, once met, will in effect mark the point in time when the Pole will be ‘ready’ for development, and the project will start without any further delays or setbacks”.
According to the approved distribution agreement, Hellinikon SA acquires the right to full ownership of 30 percent of the area of the former airport along the Athenian Riviera and 30 percent of the coastal zone area, excluding the seafront and the beach, and surface rights in the rest of the Metropolitan Pole, excluding common and public spaces.
Additionally, the company also secures rights to all residential developments and full ownership right to a shopping center, a high rise building for mixed use (hotel and offices), and a high rise office building all on Vouliagmeni Avenue, and to a hotel on the coastal front.
Concerning residential development, the company will also have full ownership of the high rise (200m) residential building in the area of the marina, homes on the coastal front, and all residential buildings around the park.
At the same time, the right to surface (provided for by the relevant legal framework) allows the contractor to exploit for 99 years all other developments of the metropolitan pole – which will after the term return to the Greek state – and include the area to host the integrated tourist complex with uses of hotel, casino, conference and exhibition spaces; the hotel and commercial developments on Agios Cosmas marina; and all recreational developments in the park.
“The success of such a demanding, complex, and long-term project requires constant and effective coordination of all parties involved, both during the implementation stage and also during the actual development process. What is of primary importance for effective and efficient running of the property is not just correct, rapid, and prudent management and maintenance of all communal areas and infrastructure, which is self-evident, but also uniform management so that there are no individual or local differences, no discrimination, and no inadequacies,” said the developer.
“There will be a metropolitan pole of global appeal which… will showcase Athens as a tourist destination, a business hub, and a spot of recreation in the wider Eastern Mediterranean region,” said Finance Minister Christos Staikouras.
Hellinikon, considered the largest greenfield urban infrastructure development investment in Europe, is the largest privately-funded investment to be carried out in Greece, budgeted at 8 billion euros and set to create more than 75,000 jobs.