(November 12, 2018 / JNS) Old city of Jerusalem can be an incredible site to visit, but anyone who tried to get there easily has probably been miserable. And that's because there is not really a convenient way for most people to come to that area without much walking or spending on private cabins.
Add to the close summer heat or mood, or both, and you look at a pretty miserable experience. It is exactly the hope that Jerusalem, the Ministry of Tourism and the Jerusalem Development Authority will change, along with many residents and tourists. With the growing tourist number and even more expected in the coming years, Jerusalem simply can not handle large volumes of tourists, and Stari Grad needs a plan. This plan is to build a ski lift that begins in the First Station complex just outside the old city walls and ends directly in front of the western wall and mountain mountain doors.
A record number of tourists – 3.6 million – visited Israel in 2017. October 2018 was the best tourist month yet. According to the Israeli State Bureau of Statistics, in October, there were approximately 486,000 tourist entries, a monthly record for entry into tourism. 2018 is on its way to hit 4 million tourists.
It is expected that the lifts will go through the valley of Hin, reaching Zion's Gate and then Dung Gate. Some activists claimed that the cableway would destroy the Old Town line and should not go through the national park Gey Ben Hin. They also say that a sales group – the company that runs the archaeological site of the city of David – will be financially benefiting from the cable car, as the final station will be built on its assets. At the same time, Arab residents in eastern Jerusalem complained that they were not consulted in the planning process and claim that construction will replace residents in the predominantly Arab neighborhood of Silva.
Doron Spielman, vice president of the City of David Foundation, rejects these claims. He told the JNS that "the planned cable cab project is an initiative of the Jerusalem municipality and many Israeli government ministries." City David welcomes all projects that increase access to millions of visitors annually – all religions and backgrounds – seeking connectivity with the historical meaning of ancient Jerusalem, including places throughout the Old the city and the City of David. "
Recently, a cable TV project was submitted to the National Infrastructure Committee, which in turn approved the submission of a cable car plan. After approval by the board, the plan will move to a stage where comments and complaints from district committees and the public are welcome. The National Infrastructure Board consists of representatives of the authorities, public representatives and representatives of local authorities who have discussed this issue.
Tourism Minister Yariv Levin said: "We have taken another major step towards approving the project of a cable car in Jerusalem, and we project and calculate a project that will change the face of Jerusalem, enabling a simple and convenient access to tourists and visitors to the West Wall.The cable car will serve as an exceptional and important tourist attraction. "
According to the Ministry of Tourism, "the cable car is designed to address the problem of congestion and accessibility that exists in the South East Basin of the Old Town, given the significant increase in tourist traffic to Israel over the past two years." The cable car will be part of the city's public transport system and make available places from national, international and tourist significance. "
The Ministry claims that the cable system will have a capacity of 3000 passengers in each direction at peak times, and will be connected to the mass transit system that is planned in Jerusalem. The cable car provides a unique transport solution in the area with topographic restrictions, limited road infrastructure capacity and historical and archaeological sites. Unlike other methods, this transportation over the country does not require significant land, nor does it require the construction or spread of the road.
It is also a "green project" that is characterized by minimal environmental damage, silent technology and zero pollution.
& # 39; High-importance Project & # 39;
The government approved in May the draft law of Levin to allocate 200 million NIS from the Ministry of Tourism to build a lifts. The project will be carried out by the Jerusalem Development Authority.
According to a statement from the Ministry of Tourism, cable cabins project "represents a significant milestone in promoting Jerusalem and strengthening its status as a world tourist capital to significantly increase tourism inland and strengthen the economy. The cable car, which will also be a unique tourist attraction with a view over Jerusalem and its unique places, will also serve the strengthening and development of night tourism in the city …
"The ski lifts will provide transportation and environmental protection solutions, and Old City will make it accessible to people with disabilities. On holidays of three monotheistic religions, dozens and hundreds of thousands of people visit the Old Town. therefore the lifts are defined as a project of great importance for tourism in Jerusalem. "
Ilanit Melchior, Director of the Development Directorate of Jerusalem, told JNS that "the project is progressing. We are building a cable car."