Marina for yacht parking or beaches to the public? The next big battle that will take place in the planning institutions will try to find the balance between the mayors’ desire to develop economic and tourism anchors by building a marina, in the face of the known environmental damage caused by the construction of the marinas in Herzliya and Ashkelon.
In a discussion held this morning (Tuesday) in the Committee on Planning Matters (and NTA) in a national outline plan for marinas, this time formulated as the refined name “Magenot”, the plan edited by architect Edna Lerman for the construction of six new moorings off Israel To be established in Nahariya, Haifa, Hadera, Netanya, Tel Aviv and Bat Yam, along with strengthening and expanding existing anchorages throughout the country.
The new moorings and those that will be expanded are to be used as moorings for vessels such as yachts, boats, as well as as solutions designed for the field of water sports. During the discussion, the positions of the heads of the authorities in the jurisdiction of their city are planned to be established, who expressed broad support for the plan, mainly for the reasons of economic and tourism potential inherent in their establishment. On the other hand, the Ministry of Environmental Protection and representatives of environmental organizations expressed opposition to the plan, claiming ecological damage and a reduction in coastal areas.
“In 2048, there are expected to be 15 million people in the State of Israel, with beaches being the most significant valuable natural resource open to the general public for free,” said Galit Cohen, senior deputy director of policy and strategy planning at the Ministry of Environmental Protection. While the population will increase. The physical impact of a mooring is enormous, and does not end with the mooring strip. There is a negative impact north or south of the mooring along the coast, as a result of erosion and damage to the sand transport to the beaches. They did not just stop building marinas in 1999. The government is still paying a price for the construction of the marina in Ashkelon in the 1990s, when the cost of maritime defenses carried out by the government due to the marina’s damage to the cliffs reached NIS 70 million. Funds that could have been invested in education or health.
“The environmental and economic consequences of establishing a marina are enormous. The public actually pays twice, once when they took an open beach in favor of a marina, and the second time when budgets are channeled to treat the marina’s damage instead of the residents’ well-being. “Because of the lack of economics, and now for economic feasibility, all kinds of uses are being established between it and the beach has nothing to do with it. There is no justification for new moorings. The mooring is an irreversible infrastructure, the beaches will be permanently degraded and can not be used as bathing beaches.”
In the face of the proposed planning for the construction of new marinas, the Society for the Protection of Nature has presented an alternative plan, which will double the existing moorings in the existing moorings, without new marinas being built. “The moorings are destroying entire beaches,” said Nir Papai, vice president of environmental and nature conservation at the Society for the Protection of Nature. “In the end, what audience are the moorings intended for?” More than 80% of the moorings are for private yachts. For water sports no large marina is required. That is why the Society for the Protection of Nature proposes to double the existing moorings, without establishing new marinas and damaging the beaches. ”
Pepi added that “three marinas were established only in the 1990s and we learn from them that they have zero contribution to the urbanity we are talking about in the program. In Ashdod it is cut off from the city, in Herzliya there is a mall that collapses economically. “Some of the beaches are crowded compared to other countries. After years, there was finally a recovery in the laying of sea turtles in the area of Netanya and Hadera and the establishment of a marina will eliminate the turtles.”
Netanya Mayor Miriam Feierberg, who supports the plan to build a marina with 700 moorings in her area, was furious at the allegations, and also admitted that to date Netanya has not been able to position itself as a tourist city. According to her, there is no demand for hotels in the city, and this will only change when a marina is built. “None of the Greens will preach to me about green,” Fairberg said at the hearing. “I cleared the mountain of garbage in Netanya and not the greens. Is the sea free? People come to the shores of Netanya from all over the country, but it costs NIS 30 million a year for Netanya residents. We have 11 lifeguard booths, each costing NIS 1.5 million a year.
“When I am required to build an elevator on the beach for tens of millions of shekels, even though the sea is the property of the state, it is like they tell me to build an elevator in an income tax building in the city, even though it is not mine. Without any marina, and just because I went to the State Comptroller, started to address the issue. So it is true that we have turtles, and frogs and snakes. But there are also state lands designated for the construction of 3,000 hotel rooms along the shores of Netanya and no one will build them unless we position ourselves as a tourist city. Only if the anchorage is built here, the state will market them quickly and they will be built.
“East of the anchorage, 2,000 housing units and commercial areas are planned, so that all concerned will not worry about building a beach trade because it is not necessary. The beach costs us NIS 30 million every year and we have no income from the sea like a port or power station. I say first run a kiosk and then give me advice. The marina will give me leverage to build hotels, and it is a tourist anchor that can strengthen the city of Netanya in many respects even at the socio-economic level. True, nothing can be done with the beach, but the industry on which the country rests This is the tourism industry, and if it does not attract tourists here, then we will be in trouble. “
Marine geologist Dr. Yaakov Nir, an expert in the field, said at the hearing that the marina in Ashkelon proves that Feuerberg’s thesis is wrong. Environmental Protection understood the matter. It is forbidden to build more white elephants in marinas, as happened in Ashkelon and Herzliya. “
The mayors each tried to convey the message that the construction of a marina is the most requested and easiest thing in their field: “The Hadera port is inside the Orot Rabin complex and is a stretch of beach that does not serve the public as a bathing beach and will never be one,” “A marina in this area will definitely fit in with a plan to build 1,500 hotel rooms that is currently on deposit.”
Nahariya Mayor Ronen Marley also adhered to the position: “In Nahariya there are quite a few beaches open to the public, from a section of 6.7 km, we are asking for 700 meters of rocky beach in favor of a marina where the damage will be small. Nahariya has always been a resort town and it is not like that today. Marina will give us employment, trade and tourism. ”
Also in Tel Aviv, the plan includes the expansion of two existing moorings in Reading and the Tel Aviv port, but the construction of a new mooring in Sde Dov is also being considered. Tel Aviv Deputy Mayor Assaf Harel justified his support for the plan by saying that in Sde Dov there could not be a bathing beach either, because it is a rocky beach.
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