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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on November 26th, 2017
by Pincas Jawetz (PJ@SustainabiliTank.com)

THIS FIRST POSTING IS JUST A DRAFT THAT WILL BE CHANGED WITH INFO COMING IN. OUR INTENTION IS CLEARLY NOT TO BASH ISRAEL BUT ONLY TO SHOW ITS PRESENT PROBLEMS WITH THE INTENT THAT SOMEONE MAY START DOING SOMETHING ABOUT THE ISSUES WE UNCOVERED.

OBVIOUSLY – OUR PRESENT WORK, AS ALWAYS, IS TO POINT OUT ISSUES OF TRANSPORTATION, COMMUNICATION AND SUSTAINABILITY – BUT YOU CANNOT DEAL WITH
TECHNICAL ISSUES WITHOUT ALSO POINTING AT THE POLITICS BEHIND THE PROBLEMS.

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My November-December month in Israel became a multi-level shocking experience. Just look at the Friday November 11th article by Oren Dori in the HAARETZ – “The Saturday Break-Down” – to avoid Religious Members of the Government stepping down, Prime Minister Netanyahu is suggesting that 60% of the work on the trains that are supposed to be done on Saturday be postponed.

The foreign company that has undertaken to do those projects says nuts – instead they will go ahead by using foreign labor that is not dependent on Israel Labor Laws. Those laws were introduced under left wing governments but fall now under the present Right-Wing Religious government that makes the rules. If you fail to understand this think of President Trump serving only those CEOs that belong to a very minor fraction of US business and thus despite nominal achievements, western world corporations are withdrawing their investment in the US economy and in the Israeli economy as well.

But we are not here to write about macroeconomy – only about the developments in a really growing transportation network that will include rail-roads, light rails, and roads with motor-vehicle transportation of all sorts, simple and sophisticated busses of large size and down to small feeder vehicles. All this needs energy and solar power is envisioned with a transition time for natural gas. Decentralization of electricity feeds has led to locations ready to use only green energy. This is not a wonder – it is the demand of the economy and of the public at large. This happens in effect in spite of the Netanyahu government.

We learned above from two events I attended and from careful reading the papers.

Those events are:

The first event was – the Gathering of Public Transportation 2017 – a yearly event now in its 6th year – Thursday, November 23rd held at the Cinematec www.transportation.org.il/ ( actually chronologically this was the second event).

The second event – but chronologically first – was held at the Prvate/Religious Brodt Center at Zeitlin Str. 22, Tel Aviv and dealt with a particular Light-Rail line – the Violet (SEGOL) line that was designed by Tel Aviv City Hall
without real inputs from the public. Work on the line was started already – seemingly in the Ben Gurion Airport proximity with tenders suggested for the
main railroad Central Station – the former Arlozorov Train-Station renamed for
long-term manager Mr. Savidor. This rail is planned for all the length of the Arlozorov Street – Turning into Ben Yehuda then Allenby and going South to the airport and eventually to Jerusalem. On the other end it connects North to Ramat Gan and beyond.

The meeting at the Brodt Center was called by some office connected to City Hall but not the Mayor. It involved the enraged citizens living on Arlozorov Street. Both sides of the street were destined to loose front yards, front gardens, etc. The rail is planned to be close to the Northern side of the Street while the South Side of the Street is intended as a business center.
What about people living there? Not clear. It was not even clear if the planning architect knew how the 26 meters wall-to wall will be divided between the different uses – rail, minibuses, bicycles, pedestrians. What about deliveries to the businesses? As I k ow someone on that street I dared to ask questions and it became clear that nobody has talked to UNESCO about the fact that the South side was registered under the Bauhaus World Heritage.

The November 12th meeting caused me then to spend the November 23 day i order to learn the problems in depth – and this wil become the main thrust of this posting.

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