Most people, according to polls, regard the campaign as overly kitsch, even if some also think it brings a little joy to the dullness imposed on the capital by communist apparatchiks after Skopje was levelled by an earthquake in 1963.
"The intention, they say, is to make Skopje look like Paris," says Danica Pavlovska, who heads Macedonia's Association of Architects. "But the scale of the project for a city this size is all wrong and frankly the pace is frightening."
With unemployment nudging 35%, and at least a third of the population living below the poverty line, the scheme has provoked violent protests and grassroots opposition.
"I don't think it's the time for statues. People need to eat, work and live," says Minira Krivaneva, an ethnic Albanian emerging from her home in the central district of Duqanxhik. "None of the people in my family works and often there is no money to pay the bills. We are 14 people and our only means of survival is the €30 we get from social security every month."
For intellectuals, who have become increasingly incensed that their capital is being turned into a mini Las Vegas, the scheme is the embodiment of "retarded nationalism" by a conservative government bent as much on giving the metropolis a facelift as changing the nation's history. "It is not only kitsch, it smacks of social engineering," says Sasho Ordanoski, a prominent political analyst. "What we are seeing is a typically populist regime building a nationalist superstate. By trying to reform our ethnic identity, to say we are not Slavs but hark back to an older age, they have resorted to a process of antiquitisation."
Petar Arsovski, another commentator, said: "We never grew up hearing about the feats of Alexander the Great. If there was any mention of him, it was very obscure. Gruevski is turning this city into a theme park, a place that looks a bit more like Las Vegas every day."