Motorway 1 (Greece)
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Motorway 1 (code: A1, also known as Athens-Thessaloniki-Evzonoi (A.TH.E.) motorway, and previously as Patras-Athens-Thessaloniki-Evzonoi (P.A.TH.E.) motorway) is the 2nd longest motorway in Greece with a length of 550 km. It is the principal north–south road connection in Greece, connecting the country's capital Athens with the regions of Thessaly and Macedonia, as well as the country's second largest city, Thessaloniki. It starts from Neo Faliro in Attica and continues north to reach the Evzonoi border station, on the Greek border with North Macedonia.
|Part of E75|
|Length||550 km (340 mi)|
|Regions||Central Macedonia, Thessaly, Central Greece, Attica|
|Major cities||Thessaloniki, Katerini, Larisa, Lamia, Athens|
|Motorways in Greece|
Today, the construction, operation and maintenance of Motorway 1 have been largely outsourced to private companies: Aftokinitodromos Aigaiou SA. (Kleidi, Imathia - Raches, Fthiotida), Kentriki Odos SA (Raches, Fthiotida - Skrafia, Fthiotida) and Nea Odos SA (Skarfia, Fthiotida - Metamorfosi, Attica).
The motorway passes through Mainland Greece and has largely replaced National Road 1. It begins at Kifissou Avenue, Athens, just north of the Bay of Phaliro, and continues northward to Evzonoi, on the border with the country's northern neighbour, North Macedonia, where it continues as the A1. Before the European routes numbers were changed, the northern part from Efzoni to EO2 was E5N, while today the entire road is part of European route E75. The task of maintaining and charging for parts of the motorway has recently been ceded to private consortia, part of the deal for the construction of the Ionia Odos, the E65, as well as the bypass of Tempe Valley.
The part west of downtown Athens runs over the Cephisus river and Kifissou Avenue. From north of the boundary of Voiotia - Phthiotis, up to near Velestino, the tollway runs close to the coast of the Aegean Sea. It then continues north of the Tempe Valley and up to the junction of the European route E90. It then shares a 25 km common part with A2 / E90 (on a west–east direction), and then, at the "Axios Interchange", continues north to Evzonoi and the national border with North Macedonia. Its total length is approximately 550 km.
Motorway 1 passes near major urban centers in the country:
- Chalcis (20 km south - connection via A11)
- Thessaloniki (20 km west - connection via Egnatia Motorway and Thessaloniki's New West Entrance)
The ATHE motorway is connected to the following airports:
- Thessaloniki (Macedonia Airport) (45 km west - connection via Egnatia Motorway, Thessaloniki's new West Entrance and Thessaloniki's Ring Road)
- Nea Anchialos - (10 km west - connection via National Road 30)
- Athens (Eleftherios Venizelos Airport) - (25 km west - connection via Attiki Odos)
The ATH motorway is connected to the following harbours:
Distances in kilometersEdit
|Distance in km||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||10||11|
The motorway used to be entirely a 2-lane highway and ended near Katerini until 1973. The section Athens - Lamia opened in August 1962 as a 14 m width road. The section Lamia - Larissa opened in October 1967 as a 14 m width road. The section Larissa - Katerini opened in September 1959 as a 13 m width road (except the Tempe valley pass opened as 10 m road). The section Katerini - Thessaloniki opened in September 1973 as a 14 m width road. The section Axios junction - Evzoni (border) opened in July 1973. The section Axios junction - Polykastro opened as a 14 m width road, while the section Polykastro - Evzoni (border) opened as a motorway.
When it was extended to Thessaloniki and to the border with North Macedonia, the motorway had 4-lanes. It was extended during construction in the north in the 1980s and the south in the early and mid 1990s which began near the Afidnes toll. In 1995, Motorway 1 had motorway characteristics in the sections Athens - Thebes and Kleidi - Thessaloniki, while the section Thebes - Kleidi was an undivided 14 m road. In 1998, the motorway had 6-lanes up to north of Thebes, and 4 lanes from Thebes up to the Tempe Valley with a few sections at western Magnesia still having 2 lanes. Since then, the Larissa bypass has been constructed. As from 2017, it complies with all motorway standards for its whole length with either two, three or four (near Athens) traffic lanes in each direction plus an emergency lane.
The final part of the motorway, 25 km through the Tempe Valley including the longest road tunnel in the Balkans, which is about 6 km long, as well as 2 more tunnels, was completed in April 2017. The circular motorway around Athens, Attiki Odos, means that traffic can continue to the Peloponnese, linking up with the motorway to the port city of Patras (Motorway 8) and that of Kalamata (Moreas Motorway).
In November 2017, with the launch of the tender for the privatization of Egnatia Motorway and the announcement of its terms, it was announced that the upgrade of the Halastra-Polykastro section from an expressway to as motorway was under planning. This was confirmed in September 2018. Construction costs are estimated to exceed € 200 million, and the remainder of the axis from Polykastro to Evzoni, which has already been characterized a motorway will be upgraded with more modern features such as safety barriers, new signage and road improvements.
The exits of the completed sections of the A1 motorway:
A1 Motorway near Katerini
A1 Motorway close to Larissa
A1 near the Greek border with North Macedonia at Evzoni
A1 Motorway's biggest tunnel, Tempi T2 Tunnel
A1 Motorway near Nea Agathoupoli
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- "Αυτοκινητόδρομος 1 (Ελλάδα)". www.hellenicaworld.com. Retrieved 2018-07-15.
- "Εγνατία: Πρόβλεψη κατασκευής αυτοκινητόδρομου στο Χαλάστρα-Εύζωνοι βάζει το ΤΑΙΠΕΔ - ypodomes.com" (in Greek). Retrieved 2018-08-20.
- "Εγνατία Οδός: Οριστικά στο αντικείμενο η αναβάθμιση σε αυτοκινητόδρομο του Χαλάστρα-Πολύκαστρο - ypodomes.com" (in Greek). Retrieved 2018-10-07.
- "Aυτοκινητόδρομος (Aftokinitodromos) A1 - Νέα Οδός (Nea Odos), Aυτοκινητόδρομος Αιγαίου (Aftokinitodromos Aigaiou)". web.archive.org. 2018-03-17. Retrieved 2020-02-02.
- Or 2.8 m, depending on the gate