Givatayim, already the second most densely populated city in Israel, is set to become yet more crowded in the future. Under a general outline plan for the city, which it has been decided will be deposited at the Tel Aviv Planning and Building Committee, the population of Givatayim will grow to 101,000 inhabitants by 2040, 66% more than the current population of about 60,500.
This means that instead of a population density of nearly 19,000 people per square kilometer in 2020, according to Central Bureau of Statistics data, Givatayim will have a density of 31,000 people per square kilometer, even more dense than Bnei Brak, currently the most densely populated city in Israel, with 28,500 people per square kilometer, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics.
Givatayim has 24,950 housing units, and the general outline plan proposes raising this to 41,660 units (according to an average of 2.4 people per household in the city). Existing plans and plans at advanced stages will expand the city’s population to 69,200 residents, so that within the next few years the city’s population density will rise to about 21,000 people per square kilometer. The target, as mentioned, is even higher, and it will be reached by, among other things, high-rise construction, chiefly in the parts of the city that border Tel Aviv and Ramat Gan, and along the main Katzenelson Street thoroughfare.
The general outline plan for Givatayim is, naturally, mainly based upon urban renewal. There is hardly any vacant land in the city, so that its future growth has be based on renewing existing construction. The plan encourages renewal of whole complexes, and demolition and reconstruction, and pushes for much more extensive high-rise construction than Givatayim residents are used to.
In general, the plan will encourage urban renewal for whole complexes, and in such places will grant building rights up to four times the existing rights, while urban renewal for a single building will attract only double the existing rights. The additional rights will be conditional on the plan adding affordable housing, sheltered housing, student accommodation, and apartments with no parking, of a maximum size of 65 square meters.
The preference for renewal of complexes is because of the need to add public space, which the city very much needs. The plan also calls for 1.1 million square meters of commercial and office space.
A long chapter of the plan is devoted to transport. The plans authors, headed by Naama Melis, owner of the firm Naama Melis Architecture and Urban Planning Ltd., state that Givatayim has one clear advantage: according to statistics presented to a session of the District Planning and Building Committee, 30% of the city’s area is covered by trees, a fact that encourages walking on it streets.
The survey of travel presented by the planning team found that 30% of travel in the city was on foot or by bicycle. Only 8% of journeys are by public transport, while 60% are by private vehicle. The plan sets a target of increasing use of public transport to 34%, and reducing the use of private vehicles to 30%, while walking and use of bicycles grows to 36%.
This target is based on the fact that the city is due to be networked by several future mass transit lines, headed by the M2 line of the metro, which will pass along Katzenelson Street. The Purple Line of the Gush Dan light rail is planned to go along Hashalom Road, on the western perimeter of the city. Accordingly, and as part of the desire to reduce the use of private vehicles in the city, the plan sets a parking standard of 0.5 (one parking place for every two housing units) in residential areas along mass transit routes.
Eran Nitzan, chairperson of the Tel Aviv District Planning and Building Committee, said, “The city of Givatayim is located in the heart of the metropolis, and is an important part of it. The importance of the general plan is amplified by the promotion of the metro plan, which will completely change the face of the region and will make it possible to strengthen and raise the density of the various uses in it, as manifest in the outline plan.”
Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on September 19, 2022.
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