Nea Erythraia
May 17, 2023
May 17, 2023

Neos Kosmos

Dourgouti (modern-day Neos Kosmos) is one of Athens’s quintessential refugee neighborhoods. Refugees from Armenia had already arrived in the area before the Asia Minor Catastrophe, and to a great extent, they were its first residents. After the arrival of Asia Minor refugees, and for a period of many years, both communities coexisted harmoniously with domestic migrants from many other regions of Greece. Nevertheless, the overwhelming majority of the area’s population remained Armenian for a great length of time. As a consequence, the township was long known by the name of “Armenika”.

The initial settlement was set up off the cuff, on account of the fact that the area was not included in the Town Plan of Athens. Gradually, and up to the late 1960s, the housing plans for refugees were completed; up to that point, however, life and the slum were considered as integral to each other.

The slum was still standing when the housing plans were finally completed. The issue of housing in the area was so long-standing that it created a peculiar situation, where domestic Greek migrants, Asia Minor Greeks, and Armenian refugees coexisted in harmony. At the margins of the capital city and the grand Syngrou Avenue, they had formed a tight-knit and vibrant community.

Over the course of time, the township was given other names, such as “Alopekis”, “Navarino”, “Metamorfosi tou Sotiros”, “Synoikismos Agiou Ioanni”, and “Neos Ellinikos Synoikismos”, which ultimately prevailed in the form of “Neos Kosmos”.