Alexis Grigoropoulos park

Submitted by Uncreative on January 28, 2011

On Saturday March 7th, 1,000 people converged on a vacant lot that for years had been surrounded by metal construction barriers several meters high, stealing the space from public view and public use. Going on fifteen years, the city government had promised to turn the lot into a park and still had done nothing. Recently the owner of the property, which was valued at 9 million Euros, decided to retract their offer to allow a park there and were formulating plans for construction. A confluence of neighbourhood residents and anarchists from all over Athens acted first. In one day they tore down the metal barriers and began the process of creating a park, ripping up the asphalt, building benches and planting trees. One of the participants tells with glee: "For years there had been these walls here, no one was used to thinking that there was an empty space behind them. And the day we tore it down, you see neighbours walking by they come upon this open space and start looking around them, checking the street signs - they were lost in their own neighbourhood. We transformed this place." A visitor exclaimed: “You know what the best part is? It’s seeing all the old people look at the park and how happy they are.""No," interrupted a Greek anarchist. "The best thing is that we fucked the city out of 9 million Euros."