Major Makeover Planned for Greece’s KTEL Intercity Bus Service
Greece’s outdated intercity bus services known as “KTEL” will be undergoing a major makeover budgeted at more than 100 million euros which will go into the creation of a new airport-style hub at Eleonas.
The architectural design of the new KTEL station was presented recently on Greek state broadcaster ERT by Konstantinos Moraitis, a professor at the School of Architecture of the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA).
Plans include doing away with the Liossion and Kifissos depots which will now be stationed in Eleonas. A tender for the project is expected to be announced this year after several delays. It will take two years to complete after the initial phase is announced.
Eleonas is a top priority for the government, which has announced the extensive redevelopment of one of Athens the less privileged inner-city neighborhoods. Besides serving as a major transport hub and offering upgraded services similar to those provided at the country’s airports, the government is aiming to create a tourist attraction as the site will also include a hotel, conference centers and multiplex facilities.
Among others, announced plans for the area include the creation of a metropolitan park, pedestrian walkways that will link the Botanical Garden of the Athens Agricultural University and its olive groves with the archaeological site of the Plato Academy, and the long-awaited Panathinaikos football stadium to be constructed in neighboring Votanikos, together with a multi-use sports complex.
The new KTEL station will be constructed in a 66,420m2 area in the Egaleo municipality and will include four main buildings complete with parking areas, 70 bus spots, boarding areas, a hotel, arrivals-departures area, shops and F&B facilities, conference center and exhibition spaces, bus parking spaces, drop off areas, ticketing, office and passenger waiting areas, luggage storage facilities, fuel station for buses, bus wash and repair shop.
Plans for the station also include landscaping with plenty of green spaces.
Once completed, the Eleonas KTEL will also connect with the Athens Metro through its Eleonas station, the OASA city bus line station, the Western Attica KTEL, park & ride points, taxi hubs, and will also include ticket services for international bus routes.
The government is hoping the Eleonas KTEL will improve transport services, boost state coffers, create new jobs, and contribute to the upgrade of Eleonas and surrounding Athens neighborhoods.
We could also use some direct bus service from Athens to Eretria, as well.
The creation of a modern bus hub is welcome. However what is urgently needed is for the KTEL regional and local services to talk to each other.To this day the services are not coordinated ; eg. To travel from Monemvasia to Kylini,you cannot book locally or on line; you book first to Sparta, then re-book to Kalamata and finally to Kyllini.
An efficient coordinating effort can easily be implemented. All that is needed is political will and digital software