|Ir Amim has formally published its English analysis paper on the Implications of the "Silicon Wadi" Plan - the Planned High-Tech Hub for Wadi Joz.
Over the past two years, the Jerusalem municipality has been promoting TPS 977694 - the Wadi Joz Business Park plan--known by the municipality’s preferred branding, “Silicon Wadi." The Jerusalem District Planning Committee conditionally approved the plan for deposit for objections on March 14, 2022. However, it has yet to be formally deposited.
The plan calls for the establishment of a major high-tech hub along the western side of East Jerusalem’s Wadi Joz neighborhood in place of its current commercial and industrial center. While the plan has been initiated for the ostensible benefit of East Jerusalem Palestinians, it will require the eviction and demolition of current Palestinian businesses, include possible land expropriations, and potentially lead to the Israelization of the area through the arrival of Israeli companies and employees. There is likewise speculation that the plan's goal is to ultimately create a link in the growing settlement ring around the Old City Basin along its northeastern edge. For further details and analysis of the plan's implications, refer to the linked paper above or below.
Moreover, the plan is yet another example of Israeli policy which focuses solely on "shrinking the conflict" through attempts to increase socio-economic development in East Jerusalem, while entirely neglecting the most pressing basic need: housing. As with most outline plans advanced in East Jerusalem in recent years, the Wadi Joz plan only allocates a marginal amount for residential use, while the majority of it is designated for business and commercial purposes. Rather than promoting measures to rectify the housing crisis, these plans only exacerbate the current situation and perpetuate the residential planning stranglehold, which ultimately pushes Palestinians out of the city.
Click here or above for the full paper.