Many of our designer’s studios and workshops are tucked away in one of our favorite neighborhoods of downtown Athens – Psiri. Situated in the heart of the city's historic center, Psiri was known, in the past, as a hardscrabble, working-class neighborhood – home to Athens' leather workshops and warehouses. In recent decades, though it has evolved into a fashionable hub for local nightlife. It's Athens' equivalent to Soho or the East Village.
The natural footpath into Psiri begins with Pittaki Street. For decades, Pittaki was dimly lit, poorly trafficked, and neglected. But, last year, Athenians gathered to give Pittaki a well-needed makeover. Together, they retrofitted, weatherproofed, and strung over two hundred lamps overhead, illuminating the entire length of the street. The installation was organized by Imagine the City, a non-profit aimed toward the "aesthetic upgrade of urban environments in Greece." Now, new businesses are opening along the newly lit street and it's become a favorite path for locals to stroll at night.
"The city is the way it is, because its citizens are who they are," says Imagine the City's Project Manager, Stephanie Xydia. "We like to think of ourselves as active citizens. We see the city as an extension of our home."
To see the installation, check out this terrific video from Imagine the City: