Paideia Project at URI Halted

KINGSTON, R.I. – Construction of the Center of Greek studies, the Greek-Orthodox Chapel of St. Luke, and the Greek outside theater at the University of Rhode Island (URI) by the Hellenic Society Paideia, has completely stopped.

URI says that Paideia did not fulfill its promise to finish the entire project in a two-year period, and threatens to demolish the buildings that Paideia has erected – albeit partially – thus far.

In an August 30 letter, URI Vice President Robert Weygand wrote to Paideia President Ilias Tomazos that “although we have made repeated requests in prior correspondence, we have not heard from your other representatives of Paideia regarding the required plan to restore the site to its former condition. As stated earlier, the detailed plan must be approved by this office and contain an expeditious time frame for completion.

“We must receive the requested restoration plan within thirty (30) days from the date of this letter. If we do not receive the plan within the time requested, we have no choice but to move forward with the demolition of the concrete foundations of the site. We will then look to Paideia for full reimbursement of all demolition and restoration costs and related expenses.”

Paideia promotes Hellenic studies, language, and culture, by establishing Greek academic programs and also by building centers, chapels, and outside theaters. Tomazos told TNH that “we asked for a meeting with the president of the University but we were not getting any answer. We retained a prominent lawyer from Rhode Island who sent a letter to the University and since then the issue has been frozen.” Tomazos also said that “we have inside information that they need the site to build a hotel on, but we don’t have anything official from the University.”

Tomazos said “we started building in 2009, we already have completed half of the project. We have spent quite a few hundred thousand dollars but we have also put personal work in it, worth more than two and one half million dollars. We have also received as donations materials, and the architectural designs. We have finished the first floor.

“We had promised to finish it in two years but we weren’t able to do that due to practical obstacles, such as change of the architectural designs and also the weather conditions that do not allow us to work continuously. To our great disappointment, the new University leadership has completely stooped us.

“The University officials claim that we have abandoned the project, which is completely false and unjust to say, because we have never abandoned it. Then they said that we didn’t pay the insurance, which proved to be false because we always paid it on time. Then they wanted to see us collect two million dollars. We had a meeting with Vice President Robert Weygand and other officials and I told them ‘please stop saying that we turned our back to this project because it is impossible for us to turn our back to our language, culture, faith, history and certainly to our children. The second thing that I request from you is to stop talking about demolition of the project because no donor will give us any donation when there is the threat of demolition.’”

Tomazos also said that no one at Paideia wanted to go to the court.

He said “now we go around to the Greek-American Community and we say that we don’t want money now, because the project has stopped. What we need is your pledge to help us when we start building again.

“Ted Spyropoulos pledged $100,000, Chris Tomaras $10,000, Vasilis Matarangas $10,000, Paul Kotrotsios $2,000, and Christos Christakis $10,000.”

Tomazos believes that “the building of the project will start again.” He said “we don’t want to have any animosity with the University.”


ATHENS - A regulation in an omnibus bill will allow repatriated Greeks from Albania and the former Soviet Union to receive full national pensions, Labor and Social Protection Minister Kostis Hatzidakis said during a discussion in Greek Parliament on Tuesday.

Top Stories


A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.


Biden Hosts Macron amid Friction over US Climate Law (Video)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Presidents Joe Biden and Emmanuel Macron are celebrating the longstanding U.

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Biden administration officials are toughening their language toward NATO ally Turkey as they try to talk Turkish President Recep Erdogan out of launching a bloody and destabilizing ground offensive against American-allied Kurdish forces in neighboring Syria.

Memphis Depay and Daley Blind scored in the first half and Denzil Dumfries added a late goal as the Netherlands eliminated the United States from the World Cup with a 3-1 victory Saturday that advanced the Dutch to the quarterfinals.

AL RAYYAN, Qatar Lionel Messi was pushed into the middle of a joyous post-match huddle as Argentina’s players jumped up and down to celebrate reaching the World Cup quarterfinals.

AL RAYYAN, Qatar — Memphis Depay and Daley Blind scored in the first half and Denzel Dumfries added a late goal as the Netherlands eliminated the United States from the World Cup with a 3-1 victory Saturday that advanced the Dutch to the quarterfinals.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.