Two weeks after the depositing of plan 14295 (“Givat Hamatos A”) for the construction of 2,610 housing units in a new East Jerusalem neighborhood which caused a political storm, we are informed that another 1,400 units are being promoted in Givat Hamatos.
Two further plans in Givat Hamatos – Plan No. 5834B (for 549 units) and Plan No. 5834C (for 814 units) are due to be discussed in the district planning committee on December 8th, 2011. The planning committee will hear the objections to the plans that were filed by the public and then will approve (or reject) the plans. Few months after the hearing the plan might be ready for the final approval, and the construction might start within a year or two.
It is not accidental that the three plans of Givat Hamatos new settlement are being promoted now. Plan 5834C was deposited for public review already in June 2008. In June 2010, the district committee met to discuss the objections and decided to conduct another hearing to further discuss the objections. Surprisingly, after a year and a half that the plan was dormant, the hearing was suddenly scheduled for the 3rd of November. However, the meeting was postponed again, possibly due to international pressure following the publication of the new plan in Givat Hamatos, to the 8th of December. On this date, the committee will also discuss the objections that were filed to plan 5834B (549 housing units), which was deposited for public review on March 2010. It seams that the Israeli govenement decided to move forward fast on establishing this new neighborhood and all the plans are being promoted at once.
The Givat Hamatos plan is a political bomb that, if implemented, might prevent a compromise in Jerusalem. The new neighborhood will complete the isolation between Bethlehem and East Jerusalem, and will destroy any possibility of a territorial solution in Beit Safafa and Shurafat. More on Givat Hamatos – See here.