Crossing the bridge - we've come to it

Lupolianski has given the final go to the proposed suspension bridge at the entrance to Jerusalem, which will provide a route for the light rail.

bridge 88 (photo credit: )
bridge 88
(photo credit: )
Last week, Mayor Uri Lupolianski gave the final approval for construction of the giant Strings ("Calatrava") Bridge at the entrance to the city. The mayoral nod followed the decision by the Appeals Committee of the National Council for Planning and Construction to accept the proposed design of the bridge and to reject objections presented by a group of residents of Herzl Boulevard and several other groups. In her decision, attorney Dalit Dror, chairwoman of the Appeals Committee, said that not only will the proposed bridge provide a necessary route for the light rail, it will also become a significant focal point in Jerusalem, "an architectural presentation that is both impressive and graceful at the same time." The Appeals Committee is the highest authority in the planning-approval hierarchy. An appeal to the Supreme Court is the only option now left for those residents who continue to object to construction of the bridge. Following the decision, Shmuel Tzabari, director of the light rail project, informed the "Coor" plant in Haifa Bay and the "Chimulaai" plant in Italy to begin to manufacture the bridge components. The suspension bridge, composed of 4,300 tons of steel and glass, was designed by renowned architect Santiago Calatrava. When completed, it will be six meters high, with a central mast soaring to 118 meters. Built at a 90 degree angle, the bridge will extend 360 meters between Jaffa Road and Herzl Boulevard. Also last week, the "CityPass" Jerusalem Light Rail Transit Group, which won the tender for the construction of the light rail, announced that it has begun to prepare for construction in the section of Herzl Boulevard between Mount Herzl and Rehov Pick. In the first stage, construction is expected to ease traffic at the Haft ("Hehalutz") and Shaare Zedek junctions. Following this, in about two months, CityPass will prepare the infrastructure for the light rail in two sections, from Pisga junction to Shaare Zedek junction and from Hehalutz to Rehov Pick. The work is expected to continue for approximately 18 months.