The Ministry of Transport has withdrawn from the plan to relocate Tel Aviv's New Central Bus Station. At a Supreme Court hearing held on Monday, lawyers representing the state announced that a temporary bus terminal will not be built at Tel Aviv's Panorama center, to partially replace the central bus station.
Transport sources say that the change in the ministry's position stems from Minister of Transport Miri Regev's opposition to the establishment of the terminal in Panorama, a position also expressed by Knesset Speaker Amir Ohana.
The plan agreed between the Ministry of Transport and Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality during the previous Minister of Transport Merav Michaeli's term included vacating the central station in two stages. In the first stage, it was planned to build a temporary terminal for most of the buses in the Panorama complex in Tel Aviv, where a terminal without buildings would be set up, similar to the Savidor terminal by Tel Aviv Central railway station. An overnight parking lot for buses would also be set up in the HaLochemim complex until 2024.
In 2027, the Panorama Terminal was supposed to expand its capacity, so that eventually only a small proportion of the thousands of buses currently using the central bus station would continue to do so.
In the second stage a new bus station would be built at the Ben Zvi terminal near the Holon Junction. The Ministry of Transport reckons it would be another 15 years until that bus station is built.
Meanwhile there seems to be no solution in sight for the chronic crowding, congestion and pollution caused to the residents living in the vicinity of the Tel Aviv Central Bus Station. Gadi Tunes of the campaign to vacate the bus station said, "The residents of Neve Sha'anan and Shapira remain with the worst air pollution in the country without solutions and with double the average rate of morbidity in the country. We call on Miri Regev to get involved in the situation and work to find a quick alternative that will bring historical justice to the people of Neve Sha'anan and Shapira."
Miri Regev declined to comment on the report.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on May 30, 2023.
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