(*and the Stavros Niarchos Park)
Operational in the beginning of 2016 (8-year construction, cost of 600 million EUR)
"Niarchos served in the Greek Navy during World War II. He participated in the Allied operations in Normandy and was awarded, among other distinguished service medals (...) While Niarchos was serving in the Greek Navy, the Allied Forces leased his first vessel. The ship was destroyed in battle, and Niarchos used the insurance funds as capital to expand his fleet after the War. Thus began the emergence of Stavros Niarchos as a significant participant in the world of international commerce. For many years, he owned the largest private fleet in the world, with his company operating more than 80 tankers and other vessels."
"The first program was announced in 2012 with a three-year span, during which the amount of €100 ($130 million) was distributed to organizations focusing primarily on the areas of Social Welfare and Health, while also on the areas of Education and Culture."
"Upon the completion of the first phase of the program, a second phase was introduced in June 2015, announcing the allocation of another €100 million ($112 million), this time within one year (...)."
The Opera House of a city, hosting different arts, is considered to be the "jewel" of a city.
"In 2006, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (www.SNF.org) announced its plans to fund the development of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC), a project that includes the construction and complete outfitting of the new facilities of the National Library of Greece (NLG) and the Greek National Opera (GNO), as well as the creation of the 170,000m² Stavros Niarchos Park."
"In funding the SNFCC, the Foundation’s vision is to provide the country and the city with the new institutional foundations they need to move forward, and with a framework for the future"
"In February 2008, following a closed international design competition, the Foundation’s Board of Directors unanimously selected the Renzo Piano Building Workshop (www.rpbw.com)."
2015-06-24: "a Press Conference took place today at the Visitors Center of the SNFCC, where the project’s architect, Renzo Piano, alongside the Foundation’s management, presented the overall progress of the project to date, focusing on its innovative environmental sustainability features."
Renzo Piano was given a child's drawing which says " Mr. Piano, I want to park to be created soon".
Renzo Piano's page on the project
June 2015 visit of Renzo Piano to the construction site
•The Stavros Niarchos Park: (...) one of the largest green areas in Athens. The Stavros Niarchos Park doubles the green indicator per capita in the neighboring areas, while it also significantly improves air quality, since the Park’s plants absorb approximately 11,000 kilos of CO2 emissions annually. The Park’s creation also reduces the temperature within the space by approximately 2 degrees C, in comparison to the temperature in the surrounding urban areas.
•Artificial Water Canal: (...) The Park and the Canal create a microclimate in the area. The Canal is a metaphorical “continuation” of the sea, and it provides flood protection for the entire SNFCC complex, but also for the surrounding areas.
•Water Efficiency: 51% water efficiency is achieved thanks to the rational design of the hydraulic installations, water reuse, the initially low and progressively decreasing water requirements of the Park, irrigation utilizing drilling and reverse osmosis, supplying the artificial channel with seawater.
•Energy Canopy: (...) its presence will be a thrilling addition to the city’s skyline. It is one of the largest energy canopies in Europe:
-Approximately 2GWh annually, is the electric energy produced by the canopy, contributing to the goal of zero CO2 emissions. It will significantly contribute to the achievement of the energy requirements of the GNO and NLG buildings.
Apart from its environmentally friendly characteristics, the SNFCC is also expected to have significant benefits for the domestic economy, as well as for the entire Greek society.
Indicatively, as the Boston Consulting Group 2010 study mentions:
•The initial grant for the construction of the SNFCC will deliver €1 billion in short- and mid-term economic activity.
•The operation of the SNFCC and visitor spending will contribute around €160 million to the economic activity of the surrounding area, Athens and Greece in general, during its first full year of operation.
•Athens will have a versatile world-class cultural center—with international recognition.
•The open access philosophy of the SNFCC will help remove social barriers that prevent people from participating in cultural and educational activities.
•The exemplary SNFCC public-private partnership can be used as a model for similar grants/donations that aim at the development of social infrastructure—this particular partnership is characterized by high transparency, a strong administrative structure (...).
Having environmental care and integrated financial and operational planning as its driving forces, and taking into consideration the deeply civic and social nature of the project, the implementation of the SNFCC continues, in order to provide an open platform for action, dialogue and creation.
("Landscape designer, works internationally including 40 acre Niarchos Park, Athens with Renzo Piano")
From the roof of the opera it’ll make a remarkable sight-proud #SNFCC worker Anastasios Stergiopoulos ©deborahnevins