Jerusalem Building Up and Out of Sight

Jerusalem Building Up and Out of Sight

I am a Stephen Harper fan.

When he was the Prime Minister of Canada, I admired his strong support for Israel.

Jerusalem, Israel visit by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife

In 2014, when he paid an official visit to Jerusalem, Israel, with his wife Laureen,

Cat under Israeli and Canadian flags for Prime Minister Stephen Harper visit

I arrived so early that only a cat was wandering around with me.

Benjamin and Sara Netanyahu at official reception ceremony for Stephen Harper of Canada

I don’t remember what Harper’s remark was that got the Israeli Prime Minister laughing.

But thanks to Stephen Harper’s inspiring pro-Israel speech at the Shurat Hadin conference, I now have a great quote to share along with these photos I have been saving.

Near the conclusion of his speech which came out strongly against BDS, Harper said of Israel, “Built from nothing to be one of the most successful countries on earth.”

While not many people are attending all the multiple conferences and various leadership meetings this week, it is hard to avoid the building going on in Jerusalem, Israel.

Building site in Jerusalem Israel

Construction sites around Jerusalem are similar to this one. First, earth-moving equipment digs down, down into the ground.

Jerusalem man on crane

Look up and you will see a crane.

Building crane in Jerusalem Israel

Cranes tower high above Jerusalem buildings.

New building for Jerusalem hospital under construction

This huge hole in the ground is to be the new Shaare Zedek Hospital building.

Photo of planned hospital at Shaare Zedek

An underground radiotherapy specialty unit is to rise on this site.

Jerusalem Israel National Library construction

These cranes, a lovely sight at night, are busy all day and late into the night, working on the National Library.

Jerusalem Israel construction new National Library

Earth moving equipment is now shoveling the huge pile of stones. The Knesset across the road is seen clearly in this image.

Sign with Jerusalem National Library on construction fence

A photo of the new library is on the construction fence.

Jerusalem Israel construction site of new national library

It is finally up to ground level and looks like this.

Old hotel in Jerusalem valuable property derelict

While there are still some of the most valuable pieces of real estate in the world in disrepair,

Shneller new buildings on property day man fell

other locations have buildings going up to new proportions. This housing complex is being built on the old Shneller grounds in Geula.

On the day this was taken a worker fell and was transported to hospital by ambulance. Building safety is a serious issue.

Construction site in Jerusalem Israel

The old Moment Cafe was hit by a suicide bomber in 2002 and the memorial is visible in this construction fence. In its last restaurant life, it was the site of Cafe de Paris.

Truck in building site former Moment Cafe

Now construction has begun on luxury apartment units.

Old Moment Cafe, Cafe de Paris new building as seen from street promotion

In one peephole was the image of the future building.

Old photo of Ben Maimon Street Jerusalem Israel

This is an image of how that corner looked in the past, an empty lot in old Jerusalem.

Jerusalem Israel First Station - Takana Rishona

And the old Jerusalem train station has been fixed up as a tourist attraction.

Jerusalem Takana Rishona

It is now called, Takhana Rishona, or First Station, note this piece of land and the tree.

Image cable car from First Station to Old City

The Jerusalem cable car line is to be located at First Station.

Jerusalem cable car

This cable car line is proposed to take thousands of visitors to the Old City.

No more sitting on buses in traffic? We will see if and when.

Talpiot Jerusalem Israel location to ear outside

In the shopping area of Talpiot, these red shelters were built for passers-by to have a bite to eat,

Jerusalem Israel Talpiot red structure

or perhaps to hang out while someone else shops.

Jerusalem Israel graffiti in Talpiot

Graffiti has been added in multiple locations to brighten up Talpiot.

Jerusalem Israel Getaway building project

But with all the building around Jerusalem, it is the Jerusalem Gateway project which is designed to bring the biggest change.

Jerusalem new entrance to city sign

Roads are closed and traffic has been redirected at the entrance to Jerusalem.

Construction in Jerusalem Israel

Construction is ongoing and the area looks different every time I see it.

new Jerusalem court building

The municipality published images of the new court buildings to be built along Jaffa Road.

Jerusalem new court building

With the housing and new business district to be built at the entrance to Jerusalem, the skyline of Jerusalem in the future will look very different than in the past.

Colorful umbrellas over Kikar HaMusica

At least the colorful umbrellas are again a familiar sight over Kikar HaMusica, Music Square.

Jerusalem lit on String Bridge at night

The Jerusalem Chord Bridge glows with lights at night.

Hi rise building in Jerusalem

Lights or flags, Jerusalem is going up and up and out of sight.

I heart Jerusalem sign

Even the Old City walls have a new-age ‘I Love Jerusalem’ sign.

As he ended his speech Stephen Harper said he admired the building and what had been accomplished in Israel in seven decades.

It is a wonder with all the outside and inside forces working against Israel, that so much has been built.

So much is happening on these Jerusalem streets.

Look down. Look up.

Building for the future while preserving the past.

Waldorf – Astoria in Jerusalem

While most media attention was focused on Holyland this week,

I would like to share some photos from a different major building project.

image Waldorf, photo doorman, picture man in top hat

The new Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in Jerusalem, Israel, has opened its doors.

Since Passover time, a doorman in a top hat has been on duty.

I have been fascinated by the progress of its construction,

image Waldorf Jerusalem, photo WAldorf

from a shell in November 2010,

image Waldorf Jerusalem, photo hotel

 February 2011,

image hotel being built, Waldorf Astoria Jerusalem image. picture hotel

and April 2011.

Not only by day, but when it was lit up at night,

image Waldorf at night, photo Waldorf Jerusalem, picture Waldorf Astroia

as in September 2010,

image Waldorf Jerusalem

January 2011,

image Waldorf Jerusalem, photo Waldorf Astoria, picture Waldorf Jerusalem

and as recently as in January 2014, I had to stop.

image Waldorf, photo hotel

For years one had to walk in the street as in April 2011,

on or on the other side of Agron Street.

DSC09183b

Once they built a cement wall, but then quickly removed it.

image working on hotel, photo Waldorf under constrution

So much work and so many workers,

image working on Waldorf, hotel under construction

on scaffolding and in windows.

image new hotel Jerusalem,

Sometimes I’d wonder what they were thinking,

image Waldorf construction, photo hotel,

and what they were doing.

Waldorf under construction photo.

Since the summer of 2010, the residential apartment building

image Waldorf Jerusalem

and the adjacent hotel structure,

IMG_0104b waldorf Jerusalem

 have slowly risen (September 2011)

view of Waldorf Astoria Hotel

 and slowly progressed (May 2012).

The decades-old original facade was cleaned up and remains,

photo inside Waldorf Astoria Jerusalem, Israel

while the inside of the atrium and other details have been upgraded to the max.

image Waldorf Hotel, photo inside Waldorf Jerusalem

Twice I have gone inside and have had a hard time

just getting past the beautiful flowers displayed near the entrance.

People are wandering in to look, to sit and have a drink.

Weddings are scheduled,

and conferences are being held in the Waldorf-Astoria luxury hotel.

Other Jerusalem, Israel, hotels have started upgrading their facilities,

as everyone has to go up a notch now.

photo no bus sign, image Waldorf Astoria Jerusalem, Israel

FYI, Top hats and wonderful service yes,

but NO buses allowed in front of hotel.

If you have a few spare million dollars lying around,

there are still flats for sale in the building next door,

just across from the Mamila Mall and minutes from the Old City.