The Southern District Planning and Construction Committee has approved plans for a massive park to be built at an estimated cost of NIS 400 million on 5,200 dunams (5.2 square kilometers) of land in Beersheba, reports www.local.co.il. The so-called Nahal Beersheba Park will contain an amphitheater capable of holding 12,000 people, an artificial lake and a sports complex as well as pedestrian and cycling paths, coffee shops and restaurants. It will also incorporate the Beit Eshel historic site, which is currently being restored, and the Avraham Avinu visitors' center. According to the report, the park is expected to open to the public officially in seven years' time. Mayor Rubik Danilovitch welcomed the committee's approval of the plans, saying the park would bring about change for the entire Negev region and would advance Beersheba's status as the fourth major metropolis in Israel. Meanwhile, in a separate report, www.local.co.il says that Danilovitch recently succeeded in obtaining NIS 7.7 million from the Toto Winner sports lottery for the construction of an international-standard basketball and sports stadium in the city. The report said the Municipal Company for the Development of Beersheba had already begun planning the stadium and was expected to begin issuing tenders for construction in about a year.