A 600-million-euro investment for the expansion of Piraeus port is up in the air after Greece’s Central Archaeological Council (KAS) decided to designate a significant part of Piraeus as being a site of archaeological importance among other concerns expressed thus far, making it almost impossible to go ahead with any form of construction activity.
The council’s decision is putting a brake on port-manager Cosco’s plans to upgrade the port with – among others – the creation of a 5-star hotel and a shopping center in the area, which is a basic condition for the investment under the concession deal with the Greek government.
In the same direction last month, the Port Planning and Development Committee did not approve of a mall near the cruise terminal, a logistics center in Keratsini, one of four hotel units, the installation of an 8,500-ton synchro-lift and the creation of two parking areas.
According to reports, the master plan for the port overhaul is also bound to run into more delays with regard to a series of environmental impact studies as well as additional objections expected by the Port Planning and Development Committee.
In the meantime, the Council of State, Greece’s high-test court, is expected this week to rule on a suit filed by construction companies against the terms of the tender for the development of a new cruise base budgeted at 169 million euros and majority funded by the EU.
In the meantime, plans to convert the landmark “Pagoda” building into a hotel have been forwarded to the culture ministry’s Modern Monuments Committee.
Aiming to transform Piraeus into a home porting hub and the largest shipbuilding base in the eastern Mediterranean, Piraeus Port Authority (PPA) managers Cosco submitted a master plan last year, aiming to invest millions of euros into a number of upgrade projects.