During the classical period the city's population is estimated from 150,000 to 350,000 and up to 610,000 according to Thucydides. By this process Athens has engulfed many former suburbs and villages in Attica, and continues to do so. Solar Energy, 70 (3): pp. The regional units of Central Athens, North Athens, South Athens, West Athens and Piraeus with part of East[79] and West Attica[80] regional units combined make up the continuous Athens Urban Area,[80][81][82] also called the "Urban Area of the Capital" or simply "Athens" (the most common use of the term), spanning over 412 km2 (159 sq mi),[83] with a population of 3,090,508 people as of 2011. Katsoulis B.D., Theoharatos G.A. [24][25] Cecrops accepted this gift[24] and declared Athena the patron goddess of Athens. The resulting tensions brought about the Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC), in which Athens was defeated by its rival Sparta. [19] Athens is home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Acropolis of Athens and the medieval Daphni Monastery. [151][152] In addition to a large number of multiplexes, Athens plays host to open air garden cinemas. The northern suburbs tend to be wetter and cooler in winter, whereas the southern suburbs are some of the driest locations in Greece and record very high minimum temperatures in summer. In the list with the strongest economic metropoles of the world Athens was ranked that year 102nd, while the GDP per capita for the same year was 32,000 US-dollars.[117]. [159] The biggest stadium in the country, it hosted two finals of the UEFA Champions League, in 1994 and 2007. [167] Concerts and theatrical shows, such as those by the troupe Cirque du Soleil, have recently been held in the complex. [2] The four regional units that make up what is referred to as Greater Athens have a combined population of 2,640,701. It connects Athens to the numerous Greek islands of the Aegean Sea, with ferries departing, while also serving the cruise ships that arrive. It is also a major national hub for Intercity (Ktel) and international buses as well as for domestic and international rail transport. The Port of Piraeus is the largest port in Greece and one of the largest in Europe. 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[5] Athens has been continuously inhabited for at least 5,000 years. There are overall ten state-supported Institutions of Higher (or Tertiary) education located in the Athens Urban Area, these are by chronological order: Athens School of Fine Arts (1837), National Technical University of Athens (1837), National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (1837), Agricultural University of Athens (1920), Athens University of Economics and Business (1920), Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences (1927), University of Piraeus (1938), Harokopio University of Athens (1990), School of Pedagogical and Technological Education (2002), University of West Attica (2018). [131] The expansion to Piraeus will include 12 new stations, increase the overall length of tram route by 5.4 km (3 mi), and increase the overall transportation network. Ziller also designed many private mansions in the centre of Athens which gradually became public, usually through donations, such as Schliemann's Iliou Melathron. Owing to the rain shadow of the Pindus Mountains, annual precipitation of Athens is lower than most other parts of Greece, especially western Greece. Other notable clubs within Athens are Athinaikos, Panionios, Atromitos, Apollon, Panellinios, Ethnikos Piraeus, Maroussi BCE and Peristeri B.C.. Athenian clubs have also had domestic and international success in other sports. In 338 BC the armies of Philip II defeated an alliance of some of the Greek city-states including Athens and Thebes at the Battle of Chaeronea, effectively ending Athenian independence. (el) (Agios Panteleimonas), basketball club founded in 1992 with earlier presence in A2 Ethniki Basketball. [54][65], Athens holds the World Meteorological Organization record for the highest temperature ever recorded in Europe, at 48 °C (118.4 °F), which was recorded in the Elefsina and Tatoi suburbs of Athens on 10 July 1977.[66]. In addition to building a raft of new sports venues and facilities (including a stadium designed by Santiago Calatrava), Athens undertook massive transportation infrastructure improvements that included dramatic expansion of public transportation and the construction of a new international airport. The largest and oldest university in Athens is the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. Athens is home to three European multi-sport clubs: Olympiacos, Panathinaikos, AEK Athens. The city also retains Roman and Byzantine monuments, as well as a smaller number of Ottoman monuments, while its historical urban core features elements of continuity through its millennia of history. By the mid-4th century BC, the northern Greek kingdom of Macedon was becoming dominant in Athenian affairs. It actually sprawls over the whole peninsula of Attica, which is the best part of the region of Attica, excluding the islands. The Kifisós River, only a trickle in summer, flows through the western half; the Ilisós River, often dry, traverses the eastern half. By the end of Late Antiquity, Athens had shrunk due to sacks by the Herulians, Visigoths, and Early Slavs which caused massive destruction in the city. [134] The airport, awarded the "European Airport of the Year 2004" Award,[135] is intended as an expandable hub for air travel in southeastern Europe and was constructed in 51 months, costing 2.2 billion euros. These clubs also have basketball teams; Panathinaikos and Olympiacos are among the top powers in European basketball, having won the Euroleague six times and three respectively, whilst AEK Athens was the first Greek team to win a European trophy in any team sport. Tondo of the Aison Cup, showing the victory of Theseus over the Minotaur in the presence of Athena. Thanks to his efforts, Athens was awarded the first modern Olympic Games. Areas to Avoid and Other Warnings", "Worldwide Quality of Living ranking 2019", "Founda D. (2011). The Greek Orthodox Church, which is directed by a synod sitting in Athens, was a main force in keeping alive the Greek language, tradition, and literature when such things were forbidden, and most people still support it. 209–218. In January 2007, Athens faced a waste management problem when its landfill near Ano Liosia, an Athenian suburb, reached capacity. Many of Classical civilization’s intellectual and artistic ideas originated there, and the city is generally considered to be the birthplace of Western civilization. [88][89][90][91][92][93][94][95][96] This figure is highly suspect because of the lopsided number of slaves and does not include free women and children and resident foreigners: an estimated based on Thucydides is: 40,000 male citizens, 100,000 family members, 70,000 metics (resident foreigners) and 150,000-400,000 slaves. However, Athens, like many other Bronze Age settlements, went into economic decline for around 150 years afterwards. The decades that followed became known as the Golden Age of Athenian democracy, during which time Athens became the leading city of Ancient Greece, with its cultural achievements laying the foundations for Western civilization. Parnitha National Park is punctuated by well-marked paths, gorges, springs, torrents and caves dotting the protected area. Athens has hosted the Summer Olympic Games twice, in 1896 and 2004. Athens is indeed the capital city of Greece, and as well is a traditional power centre of ancient Greek civilization. Santamouris M. (1997). [20], In Ancient Greek, the name of the city was Ἀθῆναι (Athênai, pronounced [atʰɛ̂ːnai̯] in Classical Attic) a plural. [124] Of those 1,839 buses 416 run on compressed natural gas,[124] making up the largest fleet of natural gas-powered buses in Europe[125] and all trolleybuses are equipped to enable them to run on diesel in case of power failure.[126]. Smaller zoos exist within public gardens or parks, such as the zoo within the National Garden of Athens. Iron Age burials, in the Kerameikos and other locations, are often richly provided for and demonstrate that from 900 BC onwards Athens was one of the leading centres of trade and prosperity in the region. The Athens Metropolitan Area, with an area of 2,928.717 km2 (1,131 sq mi) and inhabited by 3,753,783 people in 2011,[2] consists of the Athens Urban Area with the addition of the towns and villages of East and West Attica, which surround the dense urban area of the Greek capital. 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