Giant Herzliya Beach Real Estate Plan Approved After 23 Years on Drawing Board

Regional planning board approves 80-dunam construction plan submitted by Ofer Brothers; revised plan drew objections from city hall and environmentalists, who claimed shoreline should be set aside for the public.

Almost 23 years after it first received the application, the Tel Aviv Regional Committee for Planning and Building finally approved a giant real estate project submitted by Ofer Brothers on the Herzliya Pituach shoreline.

The plan, approved last Wednesday, covers an 80-dunam area north of Abba Eban Boulevard and east of Ramat Yam Road, which is used today as a parking area for beachgoers.

Under the approved plan, the site will now be developed for 234 apartments, 3,000 square meters for hotels and 1,500 square meters for shopping. All told, the project will include 29,000 square meters of floor space.

Marina-Li, as the project is called, will be designed along two lines of buildings running east to west. The north line will include private homes and the south line buildings of up to five stories, with the structure furthest west rising to 12 floors and a hotel next to it.

Between the two lines of buildings, a wide boulevard will provide access to the beach and public space as well as a 500-car parking garage.

The version approved is more modest than the one originally proposed by Ofer in 1990, which aroused strong opposition from residents of the wealthy coastal community.

Seven years later, the Tel Aviv District Court rejected the plan. The Ofer family, one of Israel’s richest, appealed to the High Court, which also rejecting it.

Even the revised plan met with disapproval from the city and environmentalists. “The plan was flawed from the start because building it puts apartments and commercial space in an area adjacent to the shoreline that is supposed to be for the public,” said Tzipi Isser-Itzik, who heads the Center for Environmental Defense at Netanya College.

Moti Milrod