Dizengoff Square’s Fire and Water Fountain returns to central Tel Aviv.
(photo credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/ MAARIV)
In a nighttime operation on Sunday, Tel Aviv’s Dizengoff Square got back its iconic “Fire and Water Fountain,” which was dismantled at the end of 2016 as the public square was demolished to make way for a restructured plaza in its place.
After a crane lowered the large fountain back to its place during the night, the formerly multi-colored structure stands now in its naked gray form, but the colors of Israeli sculptor Yaakov Agam’s piece of kinetic artwork are soon to be returned.
The fountain was initially erected in 1988 and underwent renovations in 2012. During the latest renovation works, the sculpture was stored in a municipality building.
The Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality said Monday it is currently in the final stages of the project to lower Dizengoff Square and return it to street level. The square was elevated in 1978 to alleviate traffic, allowing cars to pass underneath the pedestrian area, with bridges connecting the central square to the surrounding sidewalks.
Back at ground level, the renovated plaza will be encompassed by a traffic circle.
The new square, the municipality says “will provide an open and green urban space, replacement for all the underground, water and sewage infrastructure, the installation of new lighting throughout the square, rehabilitated roads, widened sidewalks and a bicycle path.”
The works are expected to be completed in the coming months. The project costs NIS 60 million, and it is being executed by the Ahuzat Hof company for the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality.
Residents have been divided over the renovation of the square, which has meant that bulldozers, traffic disruptions, rubble, workmen and building noise have been permanent features of the central square for well over a year.
But many complained that the square in its recent form was ugly and neglected, and hope that the new one will make for a more aesthetic space. If all goes to plan, residents should soon be able to cast their vote on the 2018 version of Dizengoff Square.
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