IDF to begin move away from Center

Once army relocates most of its bases to sites around the country, 100,000 housing units can be built on vacated land, says army source.

IDF soldier, tank outside northern Gaza 370 (photo credit: Reuters)
IDF soldier, tank outside northern Gaza 370
(photo credit: Reuters)
The IDF is poised to launch the first phase of its move out of greater Tel Aviv. It’s a move that, when completed, would eventually see almost all bases and complexes move to the South, North, and around the Center of the country.
When complete, some 1,100 hectares (2,718 acres) will be vacated, enabling the construction of 100,000 housing units and 2.5 million sq.m. of commercial or industrial buildings, “if bureaucracy permits,” an army source told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday.
The first stage of the program (known by its Hebrew acronym, Shoham), will see the clearance of 42 hectares from the sprawling Tzrifin base near Rishon Lezion, about 1 hectare from IDF General Headquarters (the Kirya) in Tel Aviv (currently housing Military Police and medical clinics), and a small base in Haifa’s downtown area.
Plans are already in place, pending approval from local government, to construct an 80-floor residential and business tower in place of the approximately 1 hectare that is to be cleared from military General Headquarters in Tel Aviv.
“We can start vacating these places immediately,” the source stated, adding that dates have been set for the relocation.
“In 2016, we’ll start vacating buildings with four or more floors from General Headquarters in Tel Aviv, and moving those units to the South,” the source said.
In the future, areas of Tzrifin used to construct Merkava tanks are to move the Carmel region in the North, and, according to initial plans, the IDF’s Technological Branch is to move to Modi’in. Other areas of Tzrifin are likely to be relocated to nearby Be’er Ya’acov.
British-mandate era army camps, like Kfar Syrkin, near Petah Tikva, are slated to move out of the Center, while the security complex at Glilot is likely to be relocated to the Negev.
Once vacated, sale of the land is expected to earn the state some NIS 90 billion, half of which is to go directly to the Treasury.
Some of the remaining cash is to be diverted to the clearance of 14 old logistics and supply bases across Israel, merging them into three new modern bases.
Currently, the IDF is constructing its “City of Training Bases” in the Negev, as well as two large military campuses for the C4i Corps and the Intelligence Corps.