Israeli online daily Haaretz reported that, Irwin Moskowitz, a Jewish millionaire is behind the project which aims to construct a Jewish neighborhood in the Arab Sheikh Jarrah area, east of Jerusalem.
The suggested neighborhood, which will be composed of 90 flats, will be in the opposite direction of an Israeli police station and the Hayat Hotel.
The 90 flats will be part of six residential buildings; each building will include eight floors, a synagogue, gardens, and other areas which are meant for future use.
Haaretz said that the main aim behind the project is to boost the Jewish presence in the Old City of Jerusalem.
Lawyer Etan Gabee’, representing a Jewish organization formed by Moskowitz, submitted the plan to the Jerusalem Municipality and claimed that the lands which will be for the construction of this project are owned by Moskowitz.
Haaretz reported that the “future neighborhood” will be constructed in place of the Shepherd Hotel, which was bought by Moskowitz in 1985 in Wadi Al Mufti area.
The Shepherds Hotel building is currently used by the Israeli Border Police units as a military base.
The Jerusalem Municipality did not did not discuss the submitted project yet; the organization asked the municipality to level the Shepherds Hotel, but a special committee in Jerusalem municipality, specialized in preserving old constructions in the Old City, appealed against leveling the hotel.
The Shepherd Hotel was constructed in 1945.
It is worth mentioning that Moskowitz also financed another Jewish quarter in the east of Jerusalem, bought lands in Abu Dis area to construct a Jewish neighborhood which he named “Kadimat Zion”.
Unconfirmed sources reported that he is also behind selling properties which belong to the Greek Orthodox Church in Jerusalem.