Ancient Megalopolis, or now Megalópoli (Μεγαλόπολη |) is a town in the western part of the prefecture of Arcadia. "Megalopolis" is a Greek word for Great city. In ancient times, the town was indeed very large. It was famous for its amphitheater, known to have a capacity for 20 thousand people - the largest known.
Megalopolis, or Megalopoli is a town famous for its ancient theatre. Megalopolis is a Greek word for Great city. It is in the western part of the prefecture of Arcadia The population in 2001 reached over 5,000. It is the only growing community in western Arcadia. Other villages towns reported a loss in population in 2001. Distance from Tripoli, Greece is 30 km from 33, SE of Andritsaina and from Kalamata is 55 km NE on Interstate 7, and E65. The city has a square in the heart of the city. Its area code is 27410 with 5 digits. The mountains surrounding Megalopolis are Taygetus, and Tsiberou. Its nearest television and communications tower are on top of mount Tsiberou. Much of the area is isolated, and the forested valley contains about 10,000. It is one of the most underpopulated areas in the Peloponnese. It is situated between the Alfeios and the Elisson rivers.
It is famous for its ancient ruins founded northwest which features an ancient theatre which used to hold up to 20,000 people and was 30 m tall. Other landmarks include the Thersileon with 67 pillars and the temple (11.5 m × 5 m).
Megalopoli has three schools, lyceums, gymnasia, churches, banks, hotels, a post office and squares (plateia). It also has a train station which is also has a freight yard 1 km from downtown. The track is not through to Tripoli, the line for Kalamata – Tripoli – Argos – Corinth is 4 km S.
In 371 BC, the Theban general Epamonidas in an attempt to form a political counterweight for Sparta. It was one of the 40 places that were megále pólis (great city). Megalopolis became the seat of the Arcadian League in 370 BC which in the 3rd century BC became the Achaean League It used to be one of the about 20,000 places that have an ancient theatre. The city fell during the Middle Ages and was refounded after the Greek Independence.
It was known as Sinanou until the 19th century.
In the mid-1960s, the Public Power Organization (DEI) and the government started construction on a power plant which took several years to opened two towers? in order to increase power consumption throughout Greece. The power plant is approximately 8 km NW of downtown. It was first opened in 1969. The area is about 0.2 to 0.3 km². It serves hydro to the southern portion of Greece. A lignite mining area is situated around the plant. The power lines are near the plant. It is connected with GR-76 (Krestena – Andritsaina – Megalopoli). A part of the population are employees of this plant.
A wider highway southwest first opened in around the 1980s. Megalopolis is now bypassed by a new freeway connecting from Kalamata and Athens. Construction began in 1999 in the southwest and headad northeast in 2001 and was opened to traffic in 2002. The freeway now runs between the little villages Perivolia and Routsi, and there lies the Alfeios River.
In 1993, a brush fire burned much of eastern Megalopolis and the Tsiberou area. It burnt approximately 50 to 60 square kilometres of land.
In 2007 houses were destroyed in Megalopolis by the fires like in many other places in Greece. In Arkadia Anemodouri, Routsi, Mallota, Perivolia, Rapsommati, Elenitsa and other places experienced damages from the fires.
Division of the municipality
Megalopolis is also a province. It contains the communities of:
It also contains the municipalities of: