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Athens Traffic Restrictions Bring Crowds On Public Transport

ATHENS  – Again limiting how many vehicles can be in the Greek capital downtown – which was eased earlier during the COVID-19 pandemic – has seen people flocking back to metros, buses, trains and public transportation.

Health officials had said that could present a risk of spreading the Coronavirus even faster after anti-vaxxers refusing inoculation had driven up the number of cases to record levels, the New Democracy government not making shots mandatory.

The traffic system for the center of Athens alternates between allowing cars with odd and even license plates being allowed to enter, which somewhat reduces the number of vehicles but there are still frequent traffic jams.

But returning to that method drove people back to other ways of trying to get around downtown and worsened traffic on ring roads outside the center, said Kathimerini in a report.

More buses have been added to the system but many are being stuck in traffic on roads outside the middle of the city and that is leading to people giving up on using them to avoid long waits.

“Public transport can’t operate independently; instead it must be perfectly harmonized with the transport system of the city. On the one hand, its operation should be facilitated (unobstructed traffic on the bus lanes, exclusive traffic routes etc); on the other hand, citizens should be constantly motivated to choose it over cars,” Panagiotis Papantoniou, President of the Association of Greek Transportation Specialists, told the paper.


ATHENS - Often touted as one of the best times to visit Greece to avoid summer crowds and have weather good enough for swimming, May ended with wild thunderstorms in Athens and rain across the country and continued cool.

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