(January 11, 2018 / JNS) Israel’s Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz this week announced that a new high-speed rail line connecting Jerusalem and Tel Aviv will become operational within three months.
The rail will launch March 30, exactly as forecasted by the former CEO of Israel Railways, Boaz Tzafrir, in 2014. News of the rail line’s timetable for launching follows reports in October 2017 that the project would not be completed on schedule due to issues with the electrification of Israel’s railway system.
“When I entered the office, I ordered the Transportation Ministry and Israel Railways workers to work immediately to advance the express train between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, after the project had been stalled for four years,” said Katz.
“I made a promise, and I will fulfill it. This coming Pesach, we will allow all of Israel to come en masse to Jerusalem, via the express train from Tel Aviv,” he said. “We are connecting and strengthening our capital city of Jerusalem, and we are connecting to Jerusalem’s history.”
The new Tel Aviv-Jerusalem line will be able to travel between the two major Israeli cities in 28 minutes. The rail will reach speeds of 100 miles per hour and offer a significantly faster alternative to the 78-minute Jaffa-Jerusalem route that was built during the Ottoman Empire period.
During its initial launch phase, the line will run two trains per hour, and in the future as many as six trains hourly may run on the line during rush hour.