Gabbay, Kahlon agree to prohibit beach building within 100 meters of water

"The coast is a precious resource and we cannot allow private entities to control it," said Environmental Protection Minister Avi Gabbay.

August 5, 2015 18:35
1 minute read.
Beach at Bat Yam

Beach at Bat Yam. (photo credit: COURTESY BAT YAM MUNICIPALITY)

Environmental Protection Minister Avi Gabai and Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon agreed on Wednesday that no construction on beaches would occur within 100m. of the water, amending a controversial proposal on the subject.

On Monday night, the Finance Ministry’s Planning Administration had published the office’s recommendations for coastal construction, to be included in a chapter of the forthcoming National Master Plan (“TAMA”) 1. While the scheme would prohibit residential building within 100m.

of the water, as is law today, the plans would enable the placement of kiosks and other recreational structures at only a 30-m. distance from the water.

Environmentalists immediately responded with ire, expressing concern that the new leniency would both violate the existing TAMA-13 for the Mediterranean and cause direct harm to the beaches.

Gabai met with Planning Administration director Binat Schwartz, officials from her office and Knesset Social-Environmental Lobby chairwoman MK Rachel Azaria on Wednesday in order to resolve the issue.

In coordination with Kahlon, the officials determined that beaches are a critical natural resource to the public and that there was no need for construction to occur within 100m. of the water, the Environmental Protection Ministry said.

Gabai and Schwartz agreed that they would meet again in order come to an agreement together on a revised proposal for beach development rules, according to the ministry.

“The beaches belong to the public and will remain open to the public – even now there is too much construction there,” Gabai said. “The coast is a precious resource and we cannot allow private entities to control it.”

“We will not allow building on the beaches within 100 meters of the sea,” he concluded

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