The Eilat Local Planning and Building Committee has approved the rezoning of over 100 acres used by the Israel Defense Forces and Eilat Port for housing. A new neighborhood will be built on the site along the coast to the south of the Red Sea resort, near Dekel beach. When completed, the Eilati Quarter project which is being promoted by Mayor Meir Yitzhak Halevi, will become the city's first seafront residential neighborhood.
According to the plan, 1,400 apartments and commercial space will be built on 135 acres along and near the coast. New hotels and offices will also be built in the area. Road 90, the main highway between Eilat city center and the Egyptian border at Taba will be moved and will run through the middle of the new neighborhood. Conservative estimates believe it will take the Israel Land Administration (ILA) two years before it will publish the tender to market the land to contractors.
Eilat city engineer Asaf Aricha told "Globes" that the new neighborhood will be where the city meets the sea. "All the time we are looking for what characterizes Eilat's identity. In our opinion it should be distinct and special and not like anywhere else in the country. The plan proposes mixed use with offices, commercial space and perhaps hotels. The concept is to create intensiveness close to the sea."
He added, "The new neighborhoods are very different from the buildings we are currently familiar with in Eilat in terms of planning and design. We are striving more to create streets that are open and wind down the topographical slopes towards the sea and the building itself is terraced, as if it is organic. Road 90 will be moved away from the sea and pushed further inland towards the city and will combine with a scenic promenade. We are also extending the wadis and linking them up to the coastal strip. The building is also arranged so as to link up with the sea."
The plan has been drawn up by Mayslits Kassif Roytman architects, the firm which is also responsible for planning Tel Aviv Port and promenade. Ganit Mayslits Kassif said, "In Eilat there has been a huge historical oversight because hotels block the connection between the city and the sea. This plan creates in Eilat the first and last opportunity for an urban fabric, which is bustling with the life of a coastal city that links up to this beautiful beach. People will have the possibility of living, working, sitting in cafes, hosting and being hosted and managing their urban routine next to the sea."
Prices in the new neighborhood will not be cheap. Anglo-Saxon real estate agency franchisee in Eilat said that the new neighborhoods will fulfill the growing demand for housing in Eilat. He says that a three room apartment in the Shachmon neighborhood, which is the closest to the planned new neighborhood, currently costs about NIS 1.1 million, while houses in the neighborhood cost upwards of NIS 3 million.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on February 3, 2021
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