Proposal for Light Rail to Bypass Arab Areas

YERUSHALAYIM (Hamodia Staff) -

In the wake of numerous attacks on the light rail where it runs by north Yerushalayim’s Arab neighborhoods, a proposal is being made to solve the problem by removing the target.

Municipality member and former mayoral candidate Moshe Leon wants to reroute the train so that it will connect Jewish neighborhoods with the city center while bypassing the violence-plagued Arab stations.

Citing a 20 percent decrease in ridership, Leon told Arutz Sheva, “There is no reason that many residents should suffer from lack of access to the light rail. They are afraid of traveling on it.”

According to Leon, while large portions of the route were shut down for several months, some 90,000 residents of Pisgat Ze’ev and Neve Yaakov were deprived the intra-city train service.

What would it take? “This is a total of 5,557 feet that we should lay alternative track for to bypass Shuafat,” Leon said, referring to the Arab trouble spot.

Leon argues that a shutdown of the Arab light rail stops would lead Shufat residents to do something to put a stop to the rioting.

Plans for a bypass have been drawn up and await budgetary allocation, but it is unclear whether it will happen.

On Monday, Mayor Nir Barkat removed a discussion of the rerouting from the City Council agenda.