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Three Key Culture Projects in Greece Taking Steps to Completion

An impression of the National Gallery, after it is completed.

Three major cultural projects are scheduled to move into implementation phase in the upcoming period, Greece Culture Minister Lina Mendoni said last week.

Speaking to the press, Mendoni said that the National Gallery was scheduled to open on March 25, 2021 on occasion of the 200-year anniversary of Greece’s Independence.

The Archaeological Museum of Sparta. Photo Source: Municipality of Sparta

The Archaeological Museum of Sparta. Photo Source: Municipality of Sparta

Works, she said would be completed by October 2020, behind the initial target due to “lack of coordination between involved parties” and that Culture Ministry Secretary General Giorgos Didaskalou was now appointed project manager in charge of overseeing the project.

With regard to the second project, the restoration of the Archaeological Museum of Sparta, Mendoni said it would be based on study by internationally acclaimed Italian architect Renzo Piano – who is behind such works as the Georges Pompidou Center in Paris, the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City, and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC) in Athens – and would be funded by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.

Lastly, Mendoni referred to the long abandoned 10,000-acre Tatoi Estate, which dates back to the 1880s.

The Greek government announced earlier this summer plans to restore the estate, which served as a summer retreat for Greece’s former royal family and includes 40 buildings, gardens and stables. According to Mendoni, funding for the project has already been secured.

Budgeted at 1.15 million euros, renovation and restoration works include creating museum and recreation spaces and converting it into a multipurpose cultural space.

Photo source: Wikipedia / Vasilofron

The Tatoi Estate. Photo source: Wikipedia / Vasilofron

Included among the most endangered sites in Europe by Europa Nostra in 2013, and protected by the Natura 2000 network as an area of outstanding natural beauty, the Tatoi Estate is located on Mount Parnitha some 27km from the center of Athens.

Mendoni added that progress was also being made on the extension of the National Archaeological Museum with a meeting in October set to name the party responsible for the relevant studies.

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