Building projects at the entrance to Jerusalem

Jerusalem has plans to transform itself. A building project at the entrance to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv – the Jerusalem Gateway – began in July 2019. “The location and features will help us to bring new jobs to the city. More office space will mean more businesses, whether its lawyers, bankers, or high-tech,” said Ofer Berkovitch, a member of the city’s planning and construction committee.

The Jerusalem Gateway commercial project creates a new business center in Jerusalem next to the city’s transportation hub – the city’s central bus station, the terminal of the high-speed rail line from Tel Aviv, and the cross-city light rail line. The new construction is also within walking distance to government buildings.

The 74-acre project would include several towers, with some 1.5 million square meters of office and commercial space, some 2,000 hotel rooms, and underground parking for 1,300 cars.

The Jerusalem Gateway commercial center is expected to create new jobs in Jerusalem, especially professional jobs, when the construction is complete. The project is part of the city’s overall plan to keep its younger, well-trained population from migrating elsewhere in Israel. Jerusalem has already had a technical college for some time.

The population of the Jerusalem metropolitan area about one million people. Many work elsewhere in Israel because of a lack of jobs in Jerusalem. When opened toward the end of 2023, the new Jerusalem highway 16 entrance to the city will help to relieve enormous traffic jams at the Jerusalem Gateway. Meanwhile, traffic flow is expected to become even more snarled during construction of the gateway commercial project.



Jerusalem Under Construction,” CTech, December 6, 2018.
CTech is an English-language technology news site by Calcalist (Hebrew), Israel’s leading financial daily.

Building projects at entrance to Jerusalem means real growth (and some growing pains),” Jewish News Syndicate (JNS), June 25, 2019.

3 years of jams expected as Jerusalem shuts main road near entrance,” The Times of Israel, July 14, 2019.

Construction work has begun on a new Jerusalem entrance road

The Jerusalem Post reports that a new five-kilometer highway that enters Jerusalem from the west reached the construction stage in 2019 (Jerusalem Post, November 11, 2019). This entrance is the second one into the city coming from the west – from Tel Aviv, Ben Gurion International Airport, and the rest of the Mediterranean coast.

Jerusalem’s new entrance road, designated Jerusalem Route 16, feeds traffic into southern Jerusalem. Drivers will bypass the congestion at the Jerusalem Gateway – Sha’ar HaIr – the long-time entranceway into Jerusalem from the west. In fact, this has been the only entranceway into the city from the west. This long-time entranceway has served the city’s Central Bus Station since British Mandate times. Most buses to and from Jerusalem still pass through this “Gate to the City.” Traffic through the Jerusalem Gateway also reaches the city’s convention center as well as government buildings such as the Knesset and the Supreme Court. This traffic won’t be using the new entrance road. Also, the Jerusalem Gateway will continue to serve the city center and the Old City.

A number of years ago, a northern bypass road was built. Besides bypassing east and west the heart of Jerusalem, it serves as a direct entrance to northern Jerusalem. Consequently, the Jerusalem Gateway entrance enjoyed some relief.

Jerusalem’s new entrance road will tunnel under two hilltop neighborhoods and will have three interchanges to serve southern and southwestern Jerusalem. The entrance road is expected to open for traffic toward the end of 2022. The planning stage began in 2001.


City Planning in Jerusalem

Urban planning in the Municipality of Jerusalem could call itself “Terrestrial Jerusalem” based on a long-standing phrase from the Jewish tradition. Try pronouncing “Yerushalayim de’le’Tata” – yeh roo shah LIE yim dĕ lĕ TAH tah.

The literal translation of this Aramaic phrase is “Jerusalem of Below.”

Jerusalem Below
Jerusalem Below

We humans try to develop the earthly Jerusalem consistent with the values of the Divine Jerusalem – Jerusalem of Above.

So what constitutes the Jerusalem of Above?

Patience, my friend.

I feel justified in having stolen the original logo from a disreputable organization. I made significant changes such as rewriting a Hebrew language title with this traditional one in Aramaic.

What looks like Arabic script is nonsense. I scrambled the original Arabic title into figures that are not Arabic letters. This line of figures represents the character of a holy Jerusalem that illuminates the entire world.