The people of Limassol are being asked to redefine the city and its culture for the next ten years, with the Limassol 2030 Organisation leading the effort to secure the title of European Capital of Culture for 2030.
At a press conference, the Mayor of Limassol, Nicos Nicolaides, expressed his conviction that Limassol, as a city of culture, “has all the guarantees to win this coveted title” and noted that, the City Council decided to establish a non-profit limited liability company, called “European Capital of Culture Organisation – Limassol 2030”, considering that the issue reflects the entire province and not only the Municipality.
The aim of the company, he continued, is to prepare the proposal and to plan, implement and manage the project, while the Board of Directors has already been established and consists of “renowned Limassol personalities in various fields.”
The Chairman of the Limassol 2030 Board, Andreas Pittas, said that he decided to join the effort of Limassol, having the conviction that “culture is a powerful tool to see and rethink our city, not with nostalgia, but looking to the future, to redefine how we want our city to be today and in 10 or 20 years”.
The bid for the title of European Capital of Culture, Pittas continued, leads Limassol and every candidate city to identify both its advantages and the challenges that the city and its people face.
On the basis of these challenges, he added, the organization was asked to create a plan capable of leading Limassol to an overall comprehensive and sustainable development, with a focus on culture and people and called on the people of Limassol and Cyprus, as well as foreigners, visitors and non-visitors, from all sectors, to join and participate in this journey, co-constructing the Limassol proposal and programme.
The Board President added that “by 2030, we want to listen to global problems and challenges, to discuss sustainability, ecological crisis, inclusiveness and accessibility, through the lens of culture, transcending time constraints.”
In addition, he indicated that claiming the title, for the Organization, does not mean events that will fade away the year after the title year, but a long-term plan of serious investment in culture, infrastructure and, above all, people and mindsets.
Moreover, the artistic director of the Agency, Eleana Alexandrou, said that for the Limassol 2030 team this period is an essential opportunity to activate the city’s huge human potential, with some of the prevailing issues concerning the rapid development of the city and its impact, the need for coordination, care for the less privileged, the need for more trees and less noise pollution, cultural structures strengthening institutions or creating new programs, the need for a more accessible, inclusive city that activates curiosity, respect, connection, creativity and that cares for its residents.
Alongside the organized meetings, she continued, the “Open Office” was launched, where visits will be accepted without an appointment, every Monday from 16:00-18:00, at the Municipal Social Services Center, and he presented the “city pulse” meter, a short questionnaire through which Limassol residents can express their views and perceptions of the city during the next 11 to 12 months.
Among the various activities planned, a special highlight will be a moderated debate on Saturday 18 November, where 100 citizens will sit at ten tables and analyse ten critical issues of today’s Limassol, focusing on culture and the Limassol of the next decade.
According to Alexandrou, there are also plans to pilot a new institution in early 2024 that will attempt to involve teenagers, the future adults of 2030.