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02/17 ATHENS: FORMAL/SPONTANEOUS

An Urban-Agrarian Vision for Eleonas, 2012

Yannis Aesopos

 
Eleonas, ‘Olive Grove’ in Greek, constitutes an ‘urban enclave’ within the urban mass of Athens. Located only two kilometers west of the city’s center, it is a formless, often uncanny area founded on an ir-rational circulation network and characterized by environmental and infrastructural decay. In the ancient times, Eleonas was a sacred fertile land irrigated by underground streams. Continuous urban ex-pansion from the mid-19th century onwards eliminated most the area’s green surfaces and replaced them with a random collection of manufacturing, storage and transportation facilities in constant flux. Eleonas is haphazardly shaped by these activities as well as by major infrastructural elements that define it or cut through it – traffic, rail and water. 

For full text please see printed edition. 

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