As Tel Aviv plans to cover over the Ayalon Highway (Road 20), Jerusalem is planning something similar above Begin Boulevard (Road 50). The Jerusalem Local Planning and Building Committee has approved a plan to cover 1.6 kilometers of Begin Boulevard between the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Givat Ram campus and Beit Hakerem. Over the 52.5 acre covered area a park will be built alongside 40-floor residential buildings, commercial centers, office development and public buildings. The project will cost an estimated NIS 1.2 billion.
Begin Boulevard extends over 16 kilometers from Ramot in north Jerusalem to Gilo in the south. The central section was opened in 1998 with various extensions added to the north and the southern section linking up with Road 60 (the Tunnels Highway to Gush Etzion) completed in 2015.
The Begin cover plan will link up the Beit Hakerem neighborhood with Givat Ram and the national government center. The plan includes gardens, parks, shade-giving trees, walking tracks and cycle paths alongside 1,800 apartments, 250 sheltered housing units, 300 hotel rooms, 10,000 square meters of commercial space, and 36,000 square meters of office space.
The plan is being promoted by the Israel Land Authority, the Jerusalem Municipality and the Jerusalem Development Authority and designed by the Kolker Kolker Epstein Architects.
Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion said, "The Begin Highway cover strategic plan represents an important additional tool in bringing the city towards a better future. The plan will remove an environmental obstacle while adding a great deal of green space to the city for the welfare of the public while taking advantage of land in an optimal way."
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on October 15, 2020
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