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Building and Developing HaMesika Park: From Resistance to Collaboration

  • Diego RotmanEmail author
  • Eytan Shouker
Chapter

Abstract

At a time when it was unusual in Israel for a group of residents to organize a grassroots campaign against a municipal decision about urban planning—and triumph—something even more uncommon occurred in Jerusalem: three students from the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design Jerusalem instigated the first steps for such a campaign and launched important actions that contributed greatly to the establishment of a green park where a four-lane highway had been approved. Route 34 was slated to be paved along the route of the old railway from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv, and thence through the Pat and Gonen neighborhoods at the outskirts of the Talpiot industrial zone, the Mekor Hayim neighborhood, and Emek Refaim Street. The joint initiative, launched by the Garin Dvash (Honey Group) of the Society for Protection of Nature and the Keshet School, ended with the halting of the urban plan to pave the new road and the construction of a park along the railway tracks—dubbed the Railway Park. The park has turned this inter-urban nexus into one of the most challenging connections within one of the most divided cities in Israel and beyond.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Theater StudiesHebrew University of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael
  2. 2.Department of History and TheoryBezalel Academy of Art and DesignJerusalemIsrael
  3. 3.Department of PhotographyBezalel Academy of Art and DesignJerusalemIsrael

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