This Week In Jerusalem 470047

Peggy Cidor’s round-up of city affairs.

The Neveh Ya’acov neighborhood (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
The Neveh Ya’acov neighborhood
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Your home in Jerusalem
Lack of affordable city housing is not just a problem for young couples, but is perhaps the biggest problem in the haredi sector. Hence the high interest of that sector in the large construction project in the Neveh Ya’acov neighborhood, which is already almost completely sold.
The Euro Neveh Ya’acov project, composed of four nine-story buildings for a total of 78 apartments, is close to completion. Sixty-four of the apartments have already been sold, the two first buildings out of the four of the project have been built and the third is the advanced stages of construction.
The special interest of this project, which is a private initiative, is in its high-quality building (including houses with gardens and penthouses) while still at reasonable prices for the Jerusalem market.
One of the major claims of haredim against the municipality has been, for the past 15 years, regarding the lack of housing projects for their sector. One of the reasons for this shortage is the fact that the neighborhoods with a high proportion of haredi residents are located beyond the Green Line, and construction has suffered from political obstacles – as has happened time and again in Ramat Shlomo.
Animals walking
A major animal welfare march took place this past Thursday in the capital, to enhance the link between Judaism and veganism. Aliya Letzedek (Aliya for Justice) is the name the organizers gave to this march, during which Rabbi David Rosen spoke on these two issues and the sometimes unknown link between them, also sending a message to the general public to stop consumption and support of “conscienceless, animal- abusing industries” until it causes a change in cultural and dietary norms in Israeli society.
The march for animal liberation started at Jaffa Gate and was initiated by the Ginger Vegetarian Community Center.
Back to core size
The prestigious project promoted by the Ir David Foundation (Elad) is back to its core size, following a request by Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked to the appeal committee attached to the Interior Ministry’s district commission for planning. The project – a visitors’ center at the entrance of today’s City of David compound, originally designed to be 16,000 square meters, was reduced to 10,000 sq.m.. The local committee in the municipality approved the project at its original size, but the district committee decided to reduce it by 6,000 sq.m.
According to sources in Safra Square, the decisions were, in both cases, due to lot of pressure from opposed sides – those close to the Elad association in the government, more specifically the support of Shaked; and on the other side, from left-wing associations, namely Ir Amim, which is opposed to the entire project and has been trying for a long time to cancel it or at least reduce its size.
Postmortem absolution
An innovative initiative in the haredi sector: For those who have wronged an individual or business that no longer exists, a special fund will collect the money you wish to donate to obtain the necessary atonement.
One of the major acts during the Days of Penitence ahead of Yom Kippur is to give charity to obtain the pardon for negative acts done during the year. But what happens if one has not paid his due to a business that is now closed? Or if one caused damage to a car but did not leave identifying details? What happens – believe it or not – if someone robbed a deceased person and now wishes to express remorse? The new fund – the Theft Fund – will collect your donation and use it for charitable ends in your name. A leading haredi authority, Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, has already lent his support to the initiative.