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When Athens became the capital of the new kingdom of Greece in 1833, it was a small town of Turkish-style houses clustered at the foot of the Acropolis. Beginning in the 1950ís, much of old Athens was demolished to make room for modern buildings. The movement of large numbers of people into the capital from rural areas has caused conjestion. This large mass of people as well as the geographical location of Athens has brought along …

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…dealing with the issue. The many automobiles, especially taxis, cause air pollution that threatens the ancient monuments. "The number of cars in Greater Athens has almost doubled between 1981 and 1990." (WEB, 1) The government is continuing to help decrease the lead and carbon monoxide levels in the air. Athens has initiated a permanent ban for the city centre this summer, in an effort to reduce the cityís high levels of smog and its associated health risks.