Friday, October 8, 2010
Pedestrian bridge to ease access to the beach
"The goal is to make the bridge into a place where people meet and mingle," said architect Nili Zamir-Chen. "The plan focuses on the human perspective and creates an inviting place for human interaction." Zamir-Chen also suggest that a coffee shop be set up at the western end of the bridge to mark the point where the noise of the Ayalon highway gives way to the quiet of Montefiore. The pedestrian bridge is but one of several planned to span the highway dividing the city. Tel Aviv intends to build a roof over the stretch near the Central Train Station, allowing for the construction of a new business center directly above the highway. A wide bridge is also planned near Nachalat Yitzhak, to link Emek Bracha Street with Shaul Hamelekh Avenue and the new business towers planned to the north of the Kirya government compound.
"Our idea is to reinforce the connection between the city's east and west, just like we did between the north and south," says city architect Yoav David. "We insisted the bridge would be for pedestrians and cyclists only. In the future, you'll be able to cross the bridge from Bitzron to Montefiore, continue through the south Kirya business area, Givon hill and the Cinematheque, climb up to the new Habima square, roll down Zion Boulevard and Bugrashov, and get to the sea. This kind of accessibility doesn't exist today and it's important for us to promote it." Despite the municipality's optimism, few if any sections of this route can be comfortably traversed on bicycle, or even on foot. The city architect said a planning review of Bougrahsov Street will begin soon. In the meanwhile, planning meetings in the municipality and the Ayalon highway company have already begun, and the new bridge is expected to be completed within two years.