With regard to the letter addressed by Mr. Panayiotis Psomiadis to the Head of Thessaloniki Prosecution Office requesting to investigate the delays noted on specific parts of Thessaloniki Metro Project, ATTIKO METRO S.A. hereby points out the following:
The construction of Thessaloniki Metro Project constitutes a top priority for the Ministry of Development, Competitiveness, Infrastructure, Transport and Networks. Both the political leadership of the Ministry and ATTIKO METRO S.A. are striving to find solutions to the main cause of the noted delays, i.e. the Contracting Joint Venture’s difficulty in funding the construction works.
At the western part of the Project, the worksites of DIMOKRATIA, VENIZELOU and AGHIA SOFIA Stations remain reserved by the Archaeological Departments. The archaeological surveys continue at a rapid pace, fully staffed, in two shifts. At DIMOKRATIA & AGHIA SOFIA Stations, extended detachments are in progress, i.e. the removal of a Basilica church and the detachment of a road section with its substructure, respectively. At VENIZELOU Station, following the mercury de-contamination and the issuance of an approval for the re-commencement of works by the Centre for the Prevention of Occupational Hazards (KEPEK), excavation works continue smoothly.
It is hereby pointed out that the progress of archaeological works constituted the scope of a special meeting held at the Ministry of Development, Competitiveness, Infrastructure, Transport and Networks, with the participation of Mr.Stavros Kaloyiannis, Deputy Minister of Development & Infrastructure, Mr. Stratos Simopoulos, Secretary General of Public Works and Ms. Lina Mendoni, Secretary General of the Ministry of Culture, as well as Mr. Christos Tsitouras, Chairman & Managing Director of ATTIKO METRO S.A., Mr. George Konstantinidis, Manager of Thessaloniki Metro Project and Professor Michael Tiverios, Consultant of ATTIKO METRO S.A., where it was agreed to closely monitor the progress of excavation works. To this end, it was decided that the Manager of Classical Antiquities and the Head of the Byzantine Antiquities shall visit the Project worksites on a monthly basis, while the Secretary General of the Ministry of Culture set as an objective to have all excavation works currently in progress completed within 2012.
As regards ANALIPSI Station area, the part of Delfon street located between Botsari and Hatzlazarou streets has already been given to traffic, while the approval to be given by the responsible Departments of the Central Macedonia Districts and the Municipality of Thessaloniki concerning the traffic design for the eastern part of the city is still pending; once this design is implemented, it shall improve the traffic conditions at Delfon street and the adjacent streets.
It is hereby stressed that the main concern of the Ministry and ATTIKO METRO S.A. is to address all problems causing delays in the execution of the Project and to expedite the pace of the relevant works.