Setting the grounds for the green infrastructure in the metropolitan areas of Athens and Thessaloniki: the role of green space


  • Marilena Papageorgiou Department of Planning and Regional Development, University of Thessaly, Volos 38334
  • Georgia Gemenetzi School of Science and Technology, Hellenic Open University, Patras 26335



Athens, environmental planning, Greece, Green Infrastructure, green spaces, Thessaloniki


Green Infrastructure (G.I.) is a sine qua non in contemporary planning. Green spaces can play a vital role in serving as grounds for developing G.I. and promoting environmental, social and economic benefits. In Athens and Thessaloniki (the only metropolitan areas in Greece) there has been no Green Infrastructure planning. However, existing and prospective green spaces can play a catalyzing role in the development of a Green Infrastructure. In fact, even though inadequate and insufficiently dispersed, urban green spaces present great potentials for embedding the features of “green”, “connectivity”, “multifunctionality” and “accessibility”, which are key to G.I. planning. The concept of Green Infrastructure has long been embedded in policy documents, such as the Master Plans of both metropolitan areas. And even if the G.I. term is not clearly stated in either Master Plans, there is a clear goal for the designing and networking of green spaces, to provide leisure opportunities and other functions, as well as accessibility to all citizens.