The European Investment Bank has agreed to co-finance a EUR 470 million nationwide programme to reduce death and injury caused by traffic collisions across Greece, the first investment of its kind by the EIB.
The EUR 235 million financial support agreed between the European Investment Bank and the national road operator Egnatia Odos will reduce the risk of collisions in Greek cities, rural areas, mountain districts and on Greek islands.
Over the next three years, national road operator Egnatia Odos will improve road safety at 7,000 of the most dangerous sites, located across 11 regions of Greece. The small scale safety schemes will include installation of traffic barriers, provision of anti-skid surfaces and improved warning signs and markings on roads identified as high-risk.
The project is one of the first to get the green light following the launch of the EIB’s Safer Transport Platform, part of its “advisory hub”.
Improving road safety at 7,000 locations identified as the most dangerous high-risk sites across the country will contribute to the new Greek National Road Safety Strategic Plan and the European Union Strategic Action Plan on Road Safety.
The feasibility study for the programme was carried out by Professor George Yannis of ETSC’s Greek member, the National Technical University of Athens.
ETSC Executive Director Antonio Avenoso commented: “The EIB has a reputation for funding large new infrastructure projects like airports and motorways. But this welcome new investment signals a new direction where improving safety is one of the main benefits. We would love to see EIB funding for cycle lanes, transformation of 30 km/h zones and more projects that identify and fix high-risk sites. Road deaths are a human tragedy but also cost our economies dearly – as such, road safety is an excellent investment.”