Municipality of Athens published the results on Monday of an ambitious initiative seeking to restore the natural view of buildings located in the historical centre of the city. The plan has already carried out the progressive removal of graffiti and posters stickied on the walls and facades of most residential and commercial properties by specialist clean services. Restoration works were and will continue to be undertaken upon consultation of the municipal authorities with local community representatives and shopkeepers.
In total an area of 20 acres will be cleaned from Athens historic centre. This is translated to roughly 8.3000 square metres (m2) which are going to rid of vandalism activity. Mayor of Athens, Giorgos Kaminis commented on the initiative:
‘Combating visual vandalism was our first priority. In this context, 8.300 square meters of facades, some of which are architectural treasures of the city, have been cleaned from graffiti and illegal posters and covered with anti-tagging special protection material to ensure that they will remain clean with little maintenance.’
The first building restored to its old glory was No. 15 of the Stadiou Avenue – a historic commercial building. The specialist cleaning groups use anti-graffiti substances and hydrophobic paint materials to prevent the collage of new posters on cleaned facades. Even if new posters and graffiti take place, the new material will facilitate easier clean-up in the future.
The specialist cleaners team resides within the municipal headquarters and is envisaged to carry out restoration works within 48 hours of a reported vandalism incident. The whole initiative runs under a public-private partnership scheme, with private sponsors covering part of cleaning equipment and costs.