Thessaloniki 2030 Resilient Strategy aims to achieve resilience by implementing sustainable transport measures for visitors.
The Thessaloniki 2030 Resilience Strategy (RS) constitutes a roadmap of actions to transform Thessaloniki into a sustainable & resilient community that will be able to survive and thrive no matter the stresses/shocks it encounters. With a history of 2,300 years, 31 museums, 15 UNESCO monuments, and a 50km coastal front, the city attracts more than 2 mil. visitors per year. Considering that the population of the Metropolitan Area (MA) is about 1.12 mil., the RS addresses sustainable mobility & tourism & integrates them into its action plan for 2030.
The RS includes sustainable mobility measures to facilitate visitors’ trips within the MA. Tourism is an important contributor to the local economy. However, during their visit, tourists stay in the historical center despite the numerous sites and landmarks in close adjacent municipalities in the MA.
The RS implements Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) plans to create multimodal hubs and link adjacent neighborhoods to existing mainstream cultural & tourism corridors. It also applies new city logistics, mobility & transport measures to reduce the impact of traffic & to facilitate cycling & walking. It studies the citizens’ commuting patterns, to design a metropolitan cycling network that will facilitate & promote cycling as an everyday activity & a bike trail for leisure & sports to create a cultural & tourist route. It expands the bike-sharing network along with the most visited places & promotes multimodal transportation.
Development period: 3 years
Total development budget: 260.000€ (funded by the 100 Resilient Cities pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation)
RS CRO Team: 12 people
Resilient Observatory as the Strategy’s monitoring structure funding by the ROP Central Macedonia: 150.000€ for 3 years / 3 persons
Evidence of success
- 40 organizations and 2,000 citizens participated in the resilience dialogue (03/2016 – 03/2017)
- Establishment of 5 new international collaborations
- Creation of the Resilient Office as a permanent structure in the Municipality of Thessaloniki
- Creation of the Resilient Observatory as the Strategy’s monitoring structure funding by the Region of Central Macedonia
- 68% of the overall Strategic Actions and 60% of the tourism and transport-related actions have been implemented
The main challenge of the Strategy is whether it will remain associated with the principles of local governance and decision-making and available resources.
The question concerning mobility is whether the new mobility infrastructure will create a new resilience holistic mobility system.
Potential for learning or transfer
This document addresses not only potential shocks such as the sudden influx of thousands of refugees, earthquakes, heat waves, and floods, but also the city’s multiple stresses, such as air pollution caused by an over-reliance on cars, high unemployment, and the continuing effects of the national austerity measures instituted in 2008. It is not a theoretical blueprint, but rather a concrete strategy anchored in the city’s operational procedures, and in its budget. It is a complete commitment to the city’s, and the region’s future.
Lessons and good practices sharing started of course since the city was a key partner in the development of the 100RC Network, in which the city shared its own experience with other cities facing similar situations, and collaborated to develop new approaches to addressing urban issues.
Therefore, the Strategy reflects this kind of coordination and innovative thinking that true resilience requires.
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