Bnei Brak Israel’s Most Crowded City, Modi’in Illit Its Youngest

YERUSHALAYIM -
View of Bnei Brak. (Yaakov Naumi/Flash90)

Yerushalayim is Israel’s most populous city, Modi’in Illit its youngest, and Bnei Brak its most crowded. The latest edition of the annual survey of Israel’s largest cities by the Central Bureau of Statistics indicates that the chareidi population of Israel is growing, and the country’s overall population is burgeoning.

There are 16 cities in Israel with 100,000 or more residents, the largest by far being Yerushalayim, with 901,300 residents. Tel Aviv comes in second, with 443,900 residents, followed by Haifa (281,100), Rishon LeTzion (240,400) and Petach Tikvah (240,400). The smallest big cities are Beit Shemesh with 114,400 residents, and Kfar Sava, with 100,000 residents, the newest addition to the list.

Bnei Brak is Israel’s ninth largest city, with 193,800 residents – but it is by far the country’s most crowded. On average, there are 26,368 people living in one square kilometer of Bnei Brak, far more than in runners-up Givayatim (18,351 per square kilometer), Bat Yam (15,722), Elad (13,446), Kiryat Motzkin (10,804) and Holon (10,108). But Bnei Brak and Elad’s residents are largely young; 59.2 percent of Elad residents are age 17 or less, while in Bnei Brak that figure is 47.4 percent. Bat Yam’s population, on the other hand, is significantly older; 9.9 percent of its residents are age 75 and older, as are 9.6 percent of Haifa’s, 9 percent of Kiryat Motzkin’s and 8.6 percent of Givatayim’s.

The city with the youngest populations were Modi’in Illit, where 64.4 percent of residents are age 17 or less, followed by Beitar Ilit (61.5 percent), Elad (59.2 percent) and Beit Shemesh (52.1 percent). Also having a significantly young population is the Bedouin city of Rahat, where 51.6 percent of residents are age 17 and under.

The statistics, which reflect the situation at the close of 2017, showed a total population of 8,797,000 people in Israel. Of them, 74.8 percent lived in cities (localities with a population of 20,000 or more), with the average nationwide population density 387.4 people per square kilometer. There are 77 cities in Israel, 124 local authorities, and 54 regional authorities, the report said.