Previous Page  96-97 / 108 Next Page
Show Menu
Previous Page 96-97 / 108 Next Page
Page Background


The Metropolitan Jerusalem Master Plan

The Metropolitan Jerusalem Master Plan


increase air humidity in the area by

20-30 percent and lower temperatures

significantly, a most important factor in

Jerusalem’s hot, dry summer climate.

The Jerusalem forest runs along the

road coming from the coastal plain. Today

this area is rich in flora and tall, full-

grown trees. The breeze flowing from the

Mediterranean brings warm air during the

day, and which is filtered and purified by

passing through the forest, which protects

Jerusalem from the west, as well as giving

the air greater humidity.

Since sand can be swept up into the hot

air and create heat wave conditions only in

very dry weather, cooling using plants and

evaporation are not only an effective and

esthetic means of acclimatization, they are

the only solutions for heat waves. In Israel,

heat waves are defined as days where

average relative humidity is less than 50%

on the coast or 45% in the mountains. A

heat wave is considered heavy if relative

humidity is lower than 20% in the

mountains or 35% on the coast.

Solutions to heat wave conditions can

be found in tree-planting. Large groupings

of big leafy trees create a protective belt in

high humidity. When hot, dusty air comes

through these trees, the moisture weighs

the sand down, sinking it to the ground.

This is a very delicate balance, and bringing

humidity levels up by even one percent

can break the dry heat. When the hot air

hits the trees, humidity can rise by 20-30%

almost immediately, breaking the dry heat.

Simulated imagery of

Golomb Street as it may

appear after it becomes


Sustainability in Jerusalem

main streets north-to-south and smaller

ones east-to-west – creates a framework

for construction which provides thermal

comfort for both commerce and residence.

In the future planning of Jerusalem

neighborhoods, this positive lesson should

be learned from these neighborhoods:

it is possible to plan in a manner that

contributes to the quality of life of the

residents and visitors.

Climate comfort

One of the ways in which it is possible

to preserve a pleasant climate in the

metropolitan Jerusalem region is by use of

diverse flora. Acclimatization using flora

is most economical in terms of use of

energy and natural resources.

Trees are an ideal means of creating the

shade needed in open spaces and indoors.

Today, trees are planted on the streets of

Jerusalem, but it is possible and necessary

to increase their use in future planning and

urban development. Thus, for example,

in many places there are trees planted

only on one side of the street, which of

course provides shade only on one side,

as opposed to two rows of trees with a

pedestrian walk between them – which

would offer a shaded place for walking at

all hours of the day, and such an option

should be preferred.

The most economical way to create

comfortable temperature conditions in an

open area, in terms of space, is by creating

an urban boulevard, which has four main

elements along the entirety of its length:

• Traffic lanes going in both directions.

• Accessible, comfortable, shaded parking

along the streets.

• A green lung and linear park – at least

four rows of trees along the entire

length: one row for each sidewalk and

two rows on the traffic island between

the traffic lanes.

• A central traffic island with sidewalks,

shaded with flora, for pedestrians and


A classic example of a street with all

four of these elements is Rothschild

Street in Tel Aviv. There is great potential

for the use of streets with several of

these elements in Jerusalem and for

incorporating missing elements in order

to make the city’s streets ideal in terms

of climate. Making these streets more

comfortable for residents and tourists

would turn them into lively urban


The types of trees chosen are also

of importance. Some trees are especially

effective for protecting from the sun, such

as walnut, plane, oak and Teresa trees. All

of these are tall deciduous trees, which

reach up to 15-30 meters in height. There

is also importance in planting trees that

have high evaporation levels, such as privet,

quince, yew, boxwood, cypress and sniper

trees. Use of these trees could assist in

cooling the metropolitan region by natural

evaporation. Cooling by evaporation is

suitable for especially high temperatures,

and its efficiency rises as humidity levels

drop. These are summer conditions in

metropolitan Jerusalem. Thus, planting

these types of trees on the streets of

Jerusalem could significantly lower the levels

of energy used for cooling homes.

Proper and smart use of trees can

The wind

blowing from the

Mediterranean brings

warm air during the

day, and this air is

filtered and purified

on its way through

the forest, which

protects Jerusalem

from the west

Sustainability in Jerusalem