Israel’s national planning council is expected within the next two months to consider a plan for a cable car from west Jerusalem to the Old City, easing access to the Western Wall, in line with a Tourism Ministry plan to have the project up and running within the next three years.
The cable car, to run from the city’s First Station complex to the Old City’s Dung Gate — the main entrance to the Western Wall — aims to ease traffic in and around the maze of narrow streets in the ancient part of Jerusalem by whizzing visitors across the 1.5 km route (just under a mile) as the crow flies in just 3.5 minutes.
A Tourism Ministry statement on Monday indicated the cable car will have three stops — the First Station, Mount Zion and the Dung Gate.
The plan will go straight to the national council, bypassing local and district planning committees, thanks to a successful legislative move by Tourism Minister Yariv Levin to have the project declared part of the national tourism infrastructure.
Levin told Army Radio on Monday that after approval and expected objections to the Supreme Court, the cable car would take 18 to 24 months to build.
Expectations are that up to 25,000 visitors will use the system on peak days, Levin said.
The cable car will not run on Shabbat or religious festivals, but this would not deter overseas tourists, most of whom come for several days at a time, he said.Thursday, March 09, 2017