A plan for 56 housing units in the Ramot neighborhood, which is located over the 1967 Green Line, is expected to get final approval Monday afternoon if the Jerusalem municipality’s Local Planning and Construction Committee approves its building permit. This is the first Jewish construction project over the Green Line to receive final approval in 2011.
The building permit issued by the municipality usually serves as a formality in the years-long approval process, but it is the last chance for the government or municipality to stop a project before construction begins. With the building permit, contractors could begin work on the Ramot project as soon as Tuesday.The project includes two residential buildings with some commercial space, and is located in the northeast corner of Ramot, in the direction of Arab village of Beit Hanina. The separation fence is between Ramot and Beit Hanina.
Peace Now’s Hagit Ofran, who monitors east Jerusalem construction, noted that these are part of ongoing expansion plans in Ramot and that they were well-known prior to today’s discussion. The project started the approval process in 2004.
Though the announcement represents a project that can begin construction tomorrow, it’s announcement did not cause as much of a reaction as the announcement of 13 housing units in Sheikh Jarrah last week, which only represented the first approval on that project.
“In the area of the Holy Basin [which includes Sheikh Jarrah] things are much more sensitive and explosive, but it doesn’t mean that these plans outside of Holy Basin are no consequence,” said Orly Noy, the spokeswoman for Ir Amim.