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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

No Passengers Yet, But The Train is Running on Jerusalem's Jaffa Road

We ordinary people aren't allowed on the trains yet, but it's no longer a rare sight to see the lightrail moving down Jerusalem's main drag, Rechov Yaffo, Jaffa Road.  All other vehicles have been banished, and the earthly powers haven't yet figured out how to get ambulances there when needed.

I was impressed at how full the sidewalks were the other day.  I hope that the pedestrians are patronizing the local businesses.

The stations/stops are lit up with times and notices in three languages, Hebrew, Arabic and English.  I managed to video the train moving and uploaded it to youtube.


Shy Guy said...

You missed yesterday's protest.

The city has messed up everything everywhere. We will do everything possible to avoid going near the city center.

Ask yourself why the Village Green restaurant opened a new branch in Emek Refa'im. I don't give the old one much time till it closes.

Hadassa said...

I haven't heard anything good about the light rail from anyone other than government employees. Have I missed something?

Anonymous said...

right now the light rail is a big inconvenience at best. we will see if it will ultimately improve the city. i for one am cautiously pessimistic.

Batya said...

Shy, why boycott innocent businessmen? It won't influence the government. It will just cause the innocent to suffer.

Hadassa, did I say it's good?

a, at this point we have no choice. We're going to have to live with it.

Shy Guy said...

Batya, I'm not boycotting anyone. I'm avoiding wasting my time in traffic jams and not finding parking.

If it were up to me, I'd rip the whole light rail system up, and give priority to development of the city's rundown center. But doing the latter alone won't cure the ills to the center's lack of reasonable accessibility.

Batya said...

We don't have a car, so we don't have to look for parking. Not everyone has cars. Even friends of mine with cars leave them and take buses in Jerusalem.

Hadassa said...

I guess I didn't phrase that very well. I'm asking a serious question, and I didn't mean to imply that you were in favor of the light rail. Is anyone other than the government and the relevant contractors happy about the light rail? Everyone I know hates it.

Keli Ata said...

Does this lightrail travel all around Jerusalem, like a subway system?

The lightrail (rapid transit) in Buffalo only travels to and from one direction on main street. Downtown is basically a ghost town because nobody can drive down Main Street or even park.

Nightime it should be bustling with people. That's the case right across the border in Toronto. What an eye opener to go on a weekend visit and see downtown Toronto alive at midnight and beyond.

After years of hype and millions of dollars now the city wants to remove the rapid transit. But that will take years and years of debate, community forums etc etc etc. In other words--Buffalo as usual.

If by some miracle it's removed we'll just have to keep our fingers crossed and hope Main Street will attract the type of businesses that kept it alive for years.

I certainly hope the lightrail doesn't do to Jerusalem businesses that the rapid transit did to Buffalo:(

Batya said...

Keli, thanks for the preview. This is just stage one going from northern Jerusalem, including Arab neighborhoods, though no security system is planned, and then from outside the old city, past the Municipality complex, down Jaffa Rd and then down Herzl Blvd.