This article may be a rough translation from Greek. It may have been generated, in whole or in part, by a computer or by a translator without dual proficiency. (August 2022)
16th Mayor of Patras
|28 October 1917 (aged 75–76)
|Politician, Mayor of Patras
Dimitrios Votsis (Greek: Δημήτριος Βότσης; c. 1841 – 28 October 1917) was a Greek politician and served as the mayor of Patras. His family hailed from Paramythia in Thesprotia, Epirus. He was the son of Athanasios and Eleni Votsi, who were among the first settlers of the city after their struggle for an independent Greece in Epirus was unsuccessful. Votsis pursued a legal education and subsequently worked as a judge in Patras.
In 1891, Dimitrios Votsis was elected to the municipal council of Patras and assumed the position of president. Four years later, he formed a coalition with Achilleas Gerokostopoulos and was re-elected. Votsis went on to serve as the mayor of Patras in 1899, and he was subsequently re-elected in two more elections, in 1903 and 1907. His last term as mayor was in 1914, when he served during the Balkan Wars. Following the conclusion of his service, he chose not to run for mayor again.
During Dimitrios Votsis' tenure as mayor of Patras, several significant projects and initiatives were undertaken. One of the notable accomplishments was the construction of the Cathedral of Saint Andrew . Votsis, as a Member of Parliament, proposed the project to the parliament, and in 1908, it was officially founded in the presence of King George I.
Votsis also initiated the establishment of public butcheries at Akti Dymaion and purchased the modern municipal council building for 121,000 drachmas. He actively managed the poorhouse in Akti Dymaion and played a key role in the development of new neighborhoods within the city. Additionally, Votsis oversaw the construction of a new tank in Kastro, which is still in operation today, as well as a new water tower spanning a length of 12 km.
Under Votsis' leadership, several significant infrastructure projects were undertaken. He acquired a few barracks in Synora that still exist today, maintained and enhanced the appearance of tree-planted squares in the city, and supervised the paving of roads that were previously unpaved, including those leading to Olga Square. Notably, he introduced electricity to the city in 1902 and established a gaslight factory in Krya Ition, installing the city's first lampposts in Georgiou I Square and Maizonos Street. Votsis also introduced trams to Patras, connecting them to the railroad, although the tram system ceased to exist in the city after World War II.
Votsis was recognized for his commitment to social welfare, implementing a policy that provided water to the poor at a reduced price. During his tenure, there was an attempt by the government to restrict the entrance to the city of Patras, but Votsis strongly opposed this move and continued to advocate for the city's interests, even after World War I.
Dimitrios Votsis passed away on 28 October 1917, leaving behind a legacy of significant contributions to the development of Patras. In recognition of his contributions, Votsi Street in Patras was named after him. This street stretches from Karaiskakis Street to the west, leading to Othonos-Amalias Avenue. As a further tribute, a statue honoring Dimitrios Votsis was erected at the end of the street near Othonos-Amalias Avenue in the year 2000. The statue serves as a reminder of his remarkable achievements and enduring impact on the city of Patras.