Plans revealed for Israel’s largest office tower

Azrieli Sarona tower in Tel Aviv scheduled to be completed by 2016; 50-stories tall building will offer 125,000 sqm of office space.

Azrieli Sarona 370 (photo credit: Azrieli Group)
Azrieli Sarona 370
(photo credit: Azrieli Group)
Azrieli Group controlling shareholder David Azrieli laid the foundation stone Sunday for the Sarona Center, a single, 200-meter, 50-story building in Tel Aviv’s nascent southern Kirya business district.
Azrieli Sarona will become Israel’s largest office tower upon its scheduled completion in 2016, offering 125,000 square meters of working space, a three-story, 11,000-sq.-m. mall and a seven-story underground parking lot for 1,600 vehicles. It will be the country’s second-tallest building, behind Ramat Gan’s 244-meter, 68-story, multipurpose Moshe Aviv Tower.
“People will undoubtedly ask why I am starting a NIS 1.5 billion project during a period of slowdown and uncertainty,” Azrieli told reporters. “Those who know our company’s history will see that everything we do is for the future, and the future is good. We believe that once we finish this project, the wave of losses will turn once again into gains.”
Azrieli Group purchased the land from the Israel Lands Authority for NIS 522 million last year. The building will be constructed at the eastern end of the Sarona compound near Menachem Begin Road and Kaplan Street, almost diagonally opposite the three existing Azrieli towers.
Architect Moshe Zur teamed up with David Azrieli Architects Firm to design the building, using simple geometry to produce the effect that the entire building is facing the sea, which lies almost three kilometers to the west.
Azrieli, a 90-year-old Canadian real estate tycoon, said every project undertaken by the company since 1983 had begun in bad times but finished in good times. This building, which will tower above the 140-year-old houses of Sarona’s German Templar colony, would turn the park into the “most beautiful” in the country, he said.
Azrieli rejected the view that there are too many large shopping complexes in Israel.
“The question is not how many malls there are, but rather how many good ones,” he said. “The market will punish those malls that are not as good. The United States has far more malls per person than Israel.”