The Supreme Court has announced that it intends to uphold the state's appeal against January's ruling by the Haifa Court of Administrative Affairs, which ordered the District Planning and Building Commission to hold a repeat hearing on the Carmel Beach Towers plan in Haifa.
The Supreme Court's decision appears to put an end to Yitzhak Tshuva's ambitious plan to fill an area of sea at Carmel Beach in order to construct four towers. The judges instructed the parties involved - Carmel Beach Resort 89 Ltd., controlled by Tshuva, the Haifa Municipality, and the Haifa District Planning and Building Commission - to formulate a more modest alternative to the plan. The company said that it would act to realize its rights, whether on the land it owns or on nearby land, and that it would examine suing the Haifa Municipality and the planning institutions for hundreds of millions of shekels in compensation.
The plan in question is over forty years old. It consists of the construction of a row of hotel towers on Carmel Beach in Haifa, ranging in height between seven and twenty-four floors. So far, two towers have been constructed, under the Carmel Beach Resort 89 's previous ownership. After they were built, the company was sold to Yitzhak Tshuva, who now controls it. In the years since, the plan was kept on a back burner, the main obstacles to it being the need to fill in large areas of sea, public criticism, and attitudes to the environment and to the coastline, which have changed considerably in the past few decades.
Minister of Environmental Protection Gila Gamliel said in response to the Supreme Court's decision, "I welcome the Supreme Court's stance. It gives significant status to preserving the coastal environment and protecting the public interest. We will not allow damage to shoreline, and we will protect it for the good of the public and for future generations."
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on August 10, 2020
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