Israel to Build Jewish Theme Park Designed by Rabbis in Negev Desert

Mayor of Dimona Benny Biton hopes the $400 million project will draw hotels, shopping centers and other needed economic activity

FILE PHOTO: People are seen on the Main Street during Disneyland's Diamond Celebration in Anaheim, California May 22, 2015.

The American company ITEC is planning a theme park, based on Jewish values, that it says will rival the Magic Kingdom and Harry Potter World, according to Yediot Achronot.

Sixteen Jewish-themed rides are planned for the park, including a “Splash Mountain” that replaces the Colorado Mountains with 50-story high biblical imagery. With over $400 million in foreign investment behind it, the park will be part of a planned complex of over 4,000 acres. Two rabbis are participating in the planning and design of the park.

Benny Biton, the mayor of Dimona, a city that struggles economically, is looking forward to the boost the park will provide, indicating it will put Dimona on the map. The park will make the area a tourist destination, hopefully leading to hotels, shopping centers, and other economic activity.

The park is not slated to be completed until 2023. It needs to clear government hurdles before the estimated two years of construction can begin.

Dimona is also the site of Israel’s nuclear reactor and a community of Hebrew Israelites.

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