Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

24 Elul 5765 - September 28, 2005 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly










Produced and housed by
Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Two Years of Severe Congestion at Entrance to Jerusalem Due to Bridge Construction

By S. Fried

Traffic congestion has begun to form during the days throughout the area of the entrance to Jerusalem, especially between the end of Rechov Yaffo and the beginning of Sderot Herzl and the turn to Binyanei Ha'Uma, as construction gets underway on the dramatic suspension bridge for the light-rail project.

According to light-rail project manager Shmuel Tzabari, major traffic congestion can be expected to continue for the next two years until the bridge is complete. Traffic disruptions are certain to affect the city's other points of entry as well. Moriah, the construction company for the development of Jerusalem, is beginning to lay the foundations and build the ends of the bridge.

Municipality Deputy Director Mr. Yaakov Avishar said that due to the commencement of work and the new traffic patterns, changes have been implemented at the entrance to the city via Highway 1 and the surrounding junctions. The lanes designated for public transportation vehicles on Sderot Herzl from the entrance to the city to Rechov Ben David will be eliminated. The number of lanes for public transportation vehicles on Rechov Yaffo near the Central Bus Station will also be reduced.

The City recommends drivers travel to and from Jerusalem on Hwy. 443 (Kvish Modi'in-Yerushalayim), which can be accessed via two routes: Hwy. 9-Atarot and Givat Zeev. Drivers can also enter Jerusalem via Mevaseret-Hadassah or by turning off Hwy. 1 at Sakharov Gardens and traveling through Givat Shaul. More congestion than usual can be expected along all of the alternative routes.

Inside the city, drivers should try to steer clear of the construction area whenever possible by using Begin Highway, Sderot Rupin and Sderot Rabin instead.

Construction work is also underway at the new point of entry to the city, from Hwy. 1 in the Motza area to the road leading to Ramot. This project will also take at least two years to reach completion.

Local residents will be seriously inconvenienced. Shmuel Tzabari says every effort was made to minimize the disruption, particularly during the excavation phase and the laying of the foundations and the ends of the bridge, which is scheduled to take six months. Tzabari notes the project was approved in all of the planning and construction committees and its construction is being carried out in accordance with the strict Ministry of the Environment guidelines.

Area residents battled against the construction of the bridge, which will pass near the mid-level windows of adjacent high-rise buildings, but their various opposition activities were overridden.

Before excavation work begins, portable acoustic walls are being set up to reduce the noise emitted. Twenty-foot-tall noise screens are also being installed around the boundary of the work site. If necessary further measures will be taken in accordance with Environmental Ministry directives in order to protect certain apartments from noise pollution.

Students going to the nearby School for the Blind will be directly affected by the construction site. The municipality says guided exercises will be conducted to help blind and visually impaired students grow accustomed to the alterations.

Project managers promise the end results will be beautiful. The spectacular (perhaps overdone) bridge, known as the Bridge of the Strings, will include a pedestrian walkway made of steel and glass forming a complete seal. Beneath the bridge and throughout the area of the junction a city square will be built with special flooring, landscaping, large trees, benches and attractive lighting.

Until its completions Jerusalem residents and visitors will have to exercise great patience.


All material on this site is copyrighted and its use is restricted.
Click here for conditions of use.