Israel steps up controversial building plans
A look at the status of the various construction plans in Jerusalem, West Bank
Noam (Dabul) Dvir
The past few weeks have seen the government step up plans to build thousands of housing units in controversial areas beyond the Green Line.
Some of the plans were advanced following the Palestinian Authority's UN status upgrade aftter having being frozen for months and even years.
Plans for Jerusalem include the construction of 6,000 housing units and hotel rooms, in the following outline:
Mordot Gilo: Construction of 942 housing units and an additional 200 units to be built in the distant future as part of an expansion of the Gilo neighborhood. The Jerusalem Planning and Construction Committee is currently weighing in on residents' objections.
Ramat Shlomo: Earlier this week the District Committee approved the construction of 1,500 units instead of 1,600 units. The neighborhood contains an archeological site that is off-limits in terms of construction. A final approval will be given after the construction plans are updated.
Jerusalem's Ramat Shlomo neighborhood (Photo: AFP)
Givat Hamatos: There are four construction plans for the neighborhood adjacent to Gilo and Beit Safafa:
The first plan for the construction of 2,612 new housing units was approved by the local planning committee on Wednesday. The committee added an additional 227 units.
The second plan will see the expansion of Beit Safafa and the construction of 688 units, mostly on private lands belonging to residents of the village. The plan effectively legalizes apartments built without a permit. It allows Palestinians to develop Beit Safafa.
The third plan, by the Israel Land Administration, was rejected by the District Committee. The plan was for the construction of 1,450 units both in Beit Safafa and in Gilo. It was nixed due to objections by the land owners.
The fourth plan will see 1,100 hotel rooms built in Givat Hamatos. It will be reviewed by the District Committee next month.
In Judea and Samaria, there are plans to build an additional 4,500 housing units and public buildings, mostly in area E1 in Ma'ale Adumim.
In Ma'ale Adumim there are two plans to build 2,400 units and public buildings in area E1 where the Mevaseret Adumim neighborhood is set to be established. The plans still need to pass residents' objections before the final approval. An additional 90 housing units have been put on the market.
Ma'ale Adumim. Still in planning stages (Photo: Reuters)
Givat Ze'ev: 664 new housing units in the Givat Habanana neighborhood are now on the market.
Gush Etzion Regional Council: 523 housing units were approved prior to the Palestinians' UN status upgrade.
Karnei Shomron Regional Council: 350 housing units were approved after 11 years of bureaucratic delays.
Beitar Illit: 348 new housing units are on the market.
Efrat Regional Council: 40 new houses in Givat Hadagan are on the market.
Itamar Fleishman contributed to this report