Greece

By Admin / Updated: 27 Jul 2016

Mobility Planning is primarily the responsibility of municipal authorities in Greece, although the legal and operational frameworks are rather complex and interweaving. Each mobility initiative has to adhere to a multifaceted legislative framework, oftentimes with complementing or conflicting objectives. Indicatively, Land Usage is considered a different domain, irrelevant of the Transport Planning, and of the Travel Safety and all of them irrelevant to the Economic Assessments; thus different authorities are required to give input or consent to the different activities and initiatives. Additionally, it has to be understood that the central government produces the main legislative and political documents and the tactical and operational planning is then assigned to the local authorities, which in turn may have to ask consent or even support from the central government for the adopted / proposed mobility initiatives.

The legal framework, as stipulated and enforced by the Ministry Of Environment, Energy And Climate Change, includes the (recent) institutional framework for spatial planning (Law Decree No 4269/2014) which focuses on land use and assignment of commercial and other activities on the geospatial complex. However, this law doesn’t consider appropriately the effective coordination of traffic planning and mapping of transport networks. Furthermore, this law doesn’t effectively nor entirely replace the previous legal framework, which still stands for individual stipulations. The previous institutional spatial planning framework (indicatively Law Decree No 1337 / 83, Law Decree No 2508/97 and Law Decree No 2742/99) have guided the Greek spatial planning and designated the Greek space (“ΠΠΧΣΑ – ΓΠΣ” Land Use Master plan). These are constrained to describing and mapping key technical infrastructure networks. Furthermore, the Regional Spatial Frameworks provide strategic guidance (at a regional level) covering down to the municipality level. For more detailed level, the Local Spatial Plans cover the spatial development and organization down to the basic level. Last but not least, the Special Spatial Plans usually cover larger areas, regardless of administrative boundaries, that have a rather specific activity interest.

Traffic planning is addressed through traffic studies carried out either by the Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks or by the regional / local authority. The awarding authority depends on the scale (metropolitan area vs medium vs small urban area) and on the existence of in-house expertise. The usual practice is to tender the study to an independent expert. There is a well-established framework (according to a Presidential Decree dated back to 1974) and requirements are set, however, these studies actually focus primarily on the demand forecasting and the traffic assignment, without looking across the different modes in a sustainable manner nor in balancing traffic to more sustainable modes. Regarding areas of special interest, for example metropolitan areas, large agglomerations, important traffic generators, the Greek State usually tenders either to or through Special Agencies and/or companies (indicatively but not limited to, Athens Public Transport Authority, Athens Metro Company, Thessaloniki Integrated Transport Authority, Thessaloniki Public Transport Organization, etc).

In 2015, the Ministry of Environment, Energy And Climate Change released a White Paper as part of a Call for SUMP funding (“Guide for Proposals to the Special 2014-2020 Action Plan - Sustainable cities Mathios Karlaftis”) which acts as a guidance note including best practices in Sustainable Urban Mobility  Planning.

Several Greek cities have participated in sustainable mobility projects like the ENDURANCE project and the Advance project. As of July 2016, an indicative list of SUMPS in Greece (completed, under completion or awarded) includes:
- City of Ioannina
- City of Kozani
- City of Ilioupoli
- City of Preveza
- City of Arta
- City of Igoumenitsa
- City of Larissa
- City of Pylaia – Hortiati
- City of Agioi Anargyroi & Kamatero
- City of Zografos
- City of Ampelokipoi
- City of Elassona
- City of Trikala
- City of Thermi
- City of Volos
- City of Palaion Faliro
- City of Serrai
- City of Vrilissia
- City of Thessaloniki
- City of Athens

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University of Piraeus
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