The Harel tunnels beneath the Harel interchange at Mevasseret Zion on the Tel Aviv - Jerusalem highway (Road 1) will open next week on Friday morning January 20. Two 800 meter tunnels with three lanes in each direction will replace the current interchange and much of the steep climb to the Castel hilltop.
At the same time, the Motza Bridge running west to east from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem will also open. The east to west bridge opened last April.
As from next week only two lanes will be open in each direction in the tunnels and on the bridge, with the third lane opening in another four months when the entire Road 1 project is completed.
The Harel tunnels and the Motza bridge are the centerpiece of the NIS 2.5 billion upgrade of Road 1 between Shaar Hagai and Jerusalem, which will reduce the driving time between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem to 35 minutes, if there is no heavy traffic. The new fast rail link between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv scheduled to open in 2018 will transport passengers in just 28 minutes.
The widening of the road between Shaar Hagai and the new Hemed Interchange has already been completed with a new interchange at Neve Ilan added.
There will be major disruptions next week on the highway between Latrun and Jerusalem when the tunnels open between 10pm on Thursday night and 10am Friday morning with Road 1 closed for much of the time.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 10, 2017
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