The Olympic Village

 



(See below for Hadrian's Aqueduct)


The village today comprises a new urban complex, with full and complete infrastructure to meet the housing and community needs of 10,000 citizens. It features:

* A natural gas network connected to all independent apartments
* Water supply, sewerage and flood prevention networks
* An irrigation network that uses water from wells bored on the Olympic Village site
* An underground network of optical fibre telephone lines, with the capacity to transfer electronic data rapidly
* Internal road network with complete markings and signage
* Underground electric network for lighting the streets and the surrounding area
* Underground cable television network.

 

This new town (total land surface 1,240,000 sq.m, total length 2.1 km & width 766 m, indoor hall 3,000 sq.m., outdoor sporting facilities 30,000 sq.m.) includes 2,292 apartments, 879 of which required some adaptation works after the Games. A total of 366 apartment complexes were built covering a surface of 254,000 sq.m. above the ground and 86,000 sq.m. of basements. The avoidance of uniformity and satisfaction of the operating requirements necessitated the building of 19 different types of apartments. All apartments have an area ranging between 84 and 115 sq. m., with two or three bedrooms, two bathrooms, spacious living rooms, large verandas, a basement storeroom and one parking space.

 

 

HADRIANíS AQUEDUCT _ The Olympic Village section

 

 


Hadrian was born on January 24, 76 AD.

 

Excavations within the site of the Olympic Village have unearthed remains of what is known as Hadrian's Aqueduct. Work was begun on this project in 125 AD, by order of the philhellene Emperor Hadrian, and completed fifteen years later (140 AD), during the reign of Antoninus Pius.

 

It was a work of vital importance for Athens, which had always suffered from a lack of water. Hadrian's Aqueduct was fed from springs on Mount Parnes (Parnitha) and crossed the Attica basin (Maroussi, Nea Ionia, Nea Philadelphia, Ambelokipi), to a reservoir on Lycabettus Hill. It supplied Athens with water until the 1920ís when the Marathon Dam was built. After that, the Aqueduct gradually dwindled into an irrigation channel, until it was finally phased out entirely at the end of the 20th century. Each time a water supply organisation took over the exploitation of Hadrian's Aqueduct, the last ones being the corporations ULEN, EEY and EYDAP, extensive cleaning operations, repairs and other interventions were carried out.

 

Following the route of Hadrian's Aqueduct within the Olympic Village, as it stands after the most recent interventions, we see two separate surface conduits emerging from two different locations on Mount Parnes. One of these, which runs NE-SW, joins the other, which runs N-S, from which point the now single conduit continues on southward. In about the centre of the Olympic Village the surface conduit bends sharply downwards and disappears underground. Its route from this point on is marked by shafts constructed at regular intervals (of 35 metres), until it clears the Olympic Village. Two secondary underground branches, similarly marked by shafts, converge with the central conduit at the point where the system goes underground. One of these runs NE-SW and is parallel to the first surface channel mentioned above. The other runs E- W.

 

Different construction methods and materials were used in the building of the Aqueduct. The surface conduit is a masonry structure forming a trough in the shape of an inverted ďΠĒ 40 cm wide. Its walls (approximately 60cm high by 30 cm thick are built up of rows of virtually undressed stone stuck together with mortar. The bottom of the trough is formed of a layer of compacted stone, covered with a hydraulic lining that also covers the trough walls. Centuries of use have left thick salt deposits on the bottom of the trough and the lower part of the walls. The trough has an average depth of 60 cm and is roofed over with slabs of local stone or slate.

The underground sections of the aqueduct were constructed, in the customary Roman fashion, as tunnels either built up of masonry or hewn out of the rock, depending on the hardness of the ground. This work was facilitated by the construction of open shafts at regular intervals, to accommodate the movements of men and materials within the tunnel. Once the tunnel construction work was complete, these shafts were used for the inspection and repair of the Aqueduct.