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Sunday, March 20, 2011

Is Jerusalem's Light Rail Really On Track?

There was a very frank interview with Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat in In Jerusalem this Friday, but I can't link to it nor quote from it, because it's one of their "premium" articles.  That means that you have to pay for the privilege. 

I searched the internet for something similar.  Barkat explained in it that he discovered a total lack of coordination and accountability when he began checking out the status of the light rail.  Everyone involved was blaming and suing each other.  This older article says it more discreetly.
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat said Sunday that the severe operational and planning delays in the project were inherited from the previous city administration, adding that work has been speeded up since he took office six months ago. "The municipality is doing everything it can within the limitations to speed up the project," Barkat spokesman Evyatar Elad said, in a written response. He added that the city was studying how best to proceed with future lines in the transportation project.
I don't understand why former Mayor Ehud Olmert, who initiated the project, hasn't been charged with corruption and the wasting of public funds on this fiasco.  My guess is that he left such a tangled mess, it's hard to directly connect him with anything.  That must have been his plan.  Lupiansky, who served as mayor in between Olmert and Barkat hadn't a clue and just kept the status quo, further tangling the mess and sinking government money into quicksand.  Barkat is a successful businessman and has been using those skills and experience to try to get the lightrail on track.

As someone who gets to Jerusalem at least once a week and always passing the tracks, I'm always looking out for the train.  Will it make life easier and more efficient or not?  All of us who either live, work, study or shop in Jerusalem on a regular basis are wondering.  Actually our biggest fear is safety. That train you see here (above and below) is routed through Arab neighborhoods on its way from Pisgat Zeev/Neve Ya'akov to French Hill, the "Seam" separating Jewish and Arab neighborhoods, the Old City Walls Arab neighborhood and then Jaffa Street, including the Municipality Complex, downtown, Machaneh Yehuda Market and onward to Mount Herzl.

There's nothing stopping the Arab terrorists from utilizing the train's multiple doors the way they once blew up our buses murdering and injuring Israeli civilians. The Arab terrorists have already resumed their murderous ways by murdering five of the Fogel Family of Itamar.

This past Shabbat we read Parshat Zachor.  It's a Torah G-d given commandment to remember what Amalek did to us.  Haman was descended from Amalek. And today's Amalek are the Arab terrorists. We won't have peace until they're destroyed.

Chag Purim Sameach


Shy Guy said...

Even if the operation will manage to wind up a success, the patient has died.

This project killed Jerusalem's center business district. It will continue to eat at the city's bloated budget and it does not provide an efficient transportation solution to the majority of Jerusalemites.

White elephants can't fly.

Batya said...

Olmert, Olmert... Olmert left his stamp on Jerusalem for sure.