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Thessaloniki Metro Station Set to Open After Two-Decade Wait

Metro Station in Thessaloniki set to open in November.
The metro station in Thessaloniki is set to open this November. Credit: Patrickios. CC BY-4.0/Wikimedia Commons/Patrickios

A long-awaited metro station may finally be opening in Thessaloniki at the end of November. This will put an end to a nearly two-decade wait which will alleviate some of the heavy road traffic in Greece’s second most crowded city.

After a wait of nearly two decades, the metro’s opening means around 15 percent of the northern port city’s commuters will be able to begin using the system. It is likely this will draw in some of the bus users and those who currently walk, as posited by Apostolos Papagiannakis, an associate professor in network and transport planning at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

In November last year, hundreds of visitors flocked to see the interior of the Agia Sofia metro station in Thessaloniki during an “open house” event.

At that time, there was no set date for the metro system’s opening, but it was among 71 public and private spaces of architectural interest that opened for the day as part of the 2023 “open house” tour event.

Among the visitors was Christos Staikouras, the Greek Minister of Infrastructure and Transport, who promised the crowd that Thessaloniki would have a working metro system before the end of 2024.

The long-delayed Thessaloniki metro project

Residents of Thessaloniki have anticipated the completion and operation of the metro system in the city for many years, as heavy road traffic is a persistent issue in the daily life of Greece’s second most crowded city.

The 3.5-billion-euro project was originally expected to open to the public by 2012. Construction began almost two decades ago in 2006, but progress was delayed due to a series of important archaeological discoveries in the metro tunnels.

When completed, the Thessaloniki metro system will extend 9.6 kilometers (six miles) and serve 13 stations.

“Our commitment remains unchanged. Thessaloniki will have an operational metro in the second half of 2024,” said Staikouras at the open event, accompanied by the deputy minister responsible for infrastructure, Nikos Tachiaos, the secretary of New Democracy’s parliamentary group Stavros Kalafatis, and VP & CEO of Elliniko Metro SA Nikos Kouretas.

Comprehensive plan for the improvement of public transportation in Thessaloniki

At the time, AMNA reported that the minister was given a tour of the works and saw the project’s progress. He also spoke with dozens of visitors who flocked to see the premises despite the rain, and they asked him questions about it.

“We are very near the completion of our target,” Staikouras stated. “This means that the justifiable doubt [among residents] about the timely completion of the projects is dropping. As political leaders, we are committed that all projects in Thessaloniki we will be on time.”

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