The most pressing challenge for the City of Thessaloniki is the lack of affordable and adequate housing for its most vulnerable communities (homeless, elderly, refugees, other citizens in precarity) and the urgent need to implement a climate adaptation and mitigation plan that will also support the city to reach its zero net emissions goals.

UP2030 will focus on the area of “Dioikitirion Urban District”, a neighborhood located in the western end of the city’s historic center. The district was for years a flourishing commercial and residential part of the city. The economic crisis in 2010 caused dramatic changes. Many economic activities were closed, especially the basement retail shops, leaving behind empty buildings and an overall sense of devastation and depopulation. During recent years, real estate investments turned most of the available vacant building stock into short-term dwellings for tourist exploitation. Furthermore, the population of the area is ageing, as young people move abroad or to the suburbs. while many households are susceptible to energy poverty due to the ageing and energy-intensive building stock.

To be achieved through UP2030

Through UP2030, Thessaloniki aims at creating an Action Plan that will be used as a model case study replicable for other district areas of the city. Key objectives of this work will include:

  • Enhancing access to Affordable Social Housing

Comprehensive analysis of the district trends regarding residential issues and recording of vacant building stock and affordable housing policies as key tools to reverse shrinkage without gentrification effects.

  • Dealing with the urban shrinkage phenomenon 

Policies and tools to deal with the phenomenon of population loss by keeping the multifunctionality and multicultural character of the area.

  • Designing a neutral, circular, and eco-district for all 

Development of a neutral district model based on local and micro-local characteristics focusing on efficient and applicable tools for the energy improvement of the building stock.

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