Tel Aviv's Great Synagogue, June 29, 2023. Photo: Yossi Zeliger/TPS.
Tel Aviv's Great Synagogue, June 29, 2023. Photo: Yossi Zeliger/TPS.
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Photo essay: Tel Aviv celebrates White City architecture

Tel Aviv is celebrating the 20th anniversary of UNESCO's designation of the White City as a World Heritage site.

Thanks to the arrival of German Jewish architects fleeing the Nazis, Tel Aviv has more Bauhaus-style buildings than any other city in the world. Tourists marvel at the linkage of architecture, design and art expressed in the buildings and how they all adapted to meet the unique needs of Tel Aviv in an area known as the White City.

In recognition of its architectural significance, the White City was designated a World Heritage site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization in 2003. Tel Aviv is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the UNESCO designation with musical performances and activities for children at various locations throughout the city on Thursday night.

The architectural characteristics of the buildings include simple, clean lines, functionality, and harmony with the surrounding environment. The design principles of the International Style emphasized the use of modern materials, open floor plans, and an integration of indoor and outdoor spaces.

UNESCO described the White City as “a synthesis of outstanding significance of the various trends of the Modern Movement in architecture and town planning in the early part of the 20th century.”

The name “White City” refers to the predominantly white or light-colored facades of these buildings.

Photos by Yossi Zeliger/TPS

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