20-05-2010: “Probona Woods οpen to the public”

The Probona
Woods, situated in the 5th City District, have been transformed into a recreation
hub and pole of attraction for residents of Athens and all of Attica. Athens Mayor Nikitas
Kaklamanis inaugurated the newly remodelled green and recreational space
yesterday evening, fulfilling an election pledge made to city residents.


Up until recently, the City of
Athens utilized the Woods as a nursery. On the initiative of Mayor Kaklamanis, the
site was regenerated and converted into a public space with a functional,
educational, sporting and aesthetic character, based on a model ecological
recreation and environmental awareness park.


Addressing 5th City District
residents, Mayor
Kaklamanis said:


"The reason we are here today
constitutes a glimmer of hope in the midst of the fault-finding and pessimism
which Athenians are experiencing for many reasons. Tonight, we add yet another
important piece to the city's great mosaic that we had promised Athens'


In spite of
those who oppose any good that we do, we are handing over one of 11
regeneration projects carried out in Athens neighbourhoods and the 24th
greenery project conducted in the city of Athens.


The project is significant for many reasons. We are not simply
demonstrating that we are making Athens greener, or improving quality of life
in the city for residents and visitors. It demonstrates that we operate on the
basis of a strategic development plan for our city. That is, this greenery
project arose from the planning involved in drawing up the Greenery Charter. It
forms part of the innovative Oxygen development project, whose aim is to
establish the 5th City District as a new model neighbourhood that will serve as
a recreation hub for local residents and a pole of attraction for residents of
Athens and all of Attica".



Mayor Kaklamanis also cited doctor Dimitrios
Probonas, who bequeathed the property to the Municipality, and thanked all
individuals who worked systematically in order to create the new green space.


The works at and regeneration of
Probona Woods commenced in July 2009 and included the planting of 5,160
trees and bushes, the creation of a green labyrinth with 1,150 plants, the
installation of windbreak trees as well as many other aesthetic improvements
and upgrading works.


In conclusion, Mayor Kaklamanis
referred to the nation's economic difficulties and conveyed a message of social
cohesion to citizens:

"What we need is for all of us to
join forces and do something good for our city, good for our environment, good
for one another. From the heart, I would like to say that we, as the Municipal
Authority, are obliged to keep the social cohesion of our city intact in these
difficult times we are facing.


It is not part of a Mayor's job to say
who is to blame and to what extent. If those who are in power now, or were
previously, should be blamed. The job of a Mayor is to ease the pain of
citizens. To do all he can in order for citizens to overcome the crisis with
the least possible losses.


And this is why, on May 31, we will
present a new programme concerning protection and social cohesion, initially targeting
the city's less fortunate, so that they can live through the economic problems
that exist today with the least possible distress".


For his part Deputy Mayor for Greenery
and Landscaping Yiorgos Xepapadakis, who invited residents and visitors to
support efforts to keep Probona Woods clean and safe, added:


"This is one of the biggest greenery
projects carried out during the Mayoral term of Nikitas Kaklamanis and it
demonstrates, in practical terms, that we not consider Athens to be limited to
the city centre".


The event concluded on a musical note, with a performance by the City of
Athens Music Ensembles Greek Music Workshop, featuring singer Nadia Karayianni
and conducted by Christos Halkias.



Athens City Hall
63A Athinas St, Kotzia Square, Athens 10552, Greece
Tel: +30 210 3722001
Administration Building
22 Liossion St, Athens 10438
Tel: 1595

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