Company founders and their vision

The East Jerusalem Development Company, which was established at the beginning of 1966, brought about the realization of the vision of the then Minister of Tourism Akiva Govrin and Teddy Kolek, the Mayor of Jerusalem at the time.

It is important to note that the practical steps to establish the company were preceded by an initiative formulated by Mordechai Shatner, the head of the Economic Society for Jerusalem at the time, and the Mayor of Jerusalem at the time, Mr. Mordechai Ish Shalom.

It will be clarified that Teddy Kolek, who served as the chairman of the government tourism company, before he was appointed Mayor of Jerusalem in 1965, was also an active partner in formulating the company’s vision and its realization and supported it throughout his years of office.

Yitzhak Jacobi, who worked with Teddy Kolek under the same authority in the office of David Ben-Gurion, the first Prime Minister of Israel, was chosen to serve as CEO of the company until his retirement in 1994.

Vision and goals of the company

The stated purpose of the company, which was brought to full expression during the first years of its activity, was summed up in the development of the area extending between King David St. in the west and the walls of the Old City in the east and centered on the Yemin Moshe neighborhood and the Hutsat Ha’Tzer complex, while focusing on the issues of development and tourism considering the areas of occupation and responsibilities of its founders and owners, Ministry of Tourism and Jerusalem Municipality.

These two centers of activity were rehabilitated, developed and marketed during the second half of the 1960s of the twentieth century (the restored Hatzer outdoor complex was inaugurated in 1969), while the development of the Yamin-Moshe neighborhood was completed in the half of the 1970s.

At the same time, the company’s vision, as formulated in the review and its regulations, expresses a very broad canvas of development events that could be realized in the territory under the jurisdiction of the city of Jerusalem, especially after its expansion after the end of the Six Day War in 1967, a fact that found expression in the formulation and implementation of a work plan A multi-year plan for restoration and upgrading both in the engineering and architectural context throughout the public spaces in the Old City, with the exception of the Jewish Quarter, which is being restored by the Society for the Development and Restoration of the Jewish Quarter.

During its years of activity, the company has gained a lot of experience in the restoration and preservation of buildings and infrastructure systems in the public space and has become a leading company in these contexts as well, as evidenced by its decisive involvement in many restoration and preservation projects in the city center (Nachlat Sheva neighborhood, Nachalot area, Ben Yehuda Promenade and more).

The flagship projects, which were carried out by the company during its years of existence

During its years of activity, the company has carried out hundreds of projects, the most important of which are:

  • 1969-1975 Rehabilitation, preservation, and development of Yamin Moshe neighborhood.
  • 1966-1969 Restoration of the Hutzot Hayotzer Artists Colony and at the same time the initiation of the annual fair in the Hatzer outdoor complex and its operation for about 30 years.
  • 1987-1984 Restoration and preservation of the Nachalat Shiva neighborhood
  • 1985-2010 Restoration, preservation, and development of public infrastructure systems in the city center (replacement of infrastructure systems, paving, and landscaping) and in the Ben-Yehuda pedestrian mall, Dorot Rashonim St., Salomon St., Habezlet St. complex, Mordechai Ben-Hillel St. and more)
  • 1970 and until today, restoration, preservation, and development of many complexes in the public space and in the former.
  • Shaar Jaffa Square, HaSalshelet St., Hatusor St., a complex of streets and alleys in the Christian quarter, the Muslim quarter, and the Armenian quarter..
  • 1980 and until today the Emek Hamelech project, including the restoration and upgrading of Ben Hinnom Gorge, the Yad Abshalom aviary, the Opal boardwalk, the Mount of Olives Ridge aviary, Kidron Valley, the Gihon Spring Square the cleaning of tunnel no. 2 which is found on the site of Hezekiah’s wife, Pir Warren on the site of the City of David and more.
  • 1995 to date, managing the archaeological excavations project, including restoration, preservation, and development in the area of Shaar Hashoffat, with one council and the supervision of the Antiquities Authority and at the center of the establishment of the Davidson Center. Exposure, restoration, and preservation of Herodian St., Robinson’s Arch, the mikvah complex near Robinson’s Arch and in the Ofel area, and more.
  • 1997 and until today development of infrastructure systems, training, and restoration of access roads and graves in the National Cemetery on the Mount of Olives.
  • 1988-2002 Implementation of the government’s decision regarding the upgrading of urban infrastructure systems (roads, water, sewage drainage, etc.) throughout East Jerusalem from Kfar Aqab in the north of the city to Jabal Mukabar in the south.
  • 1995-1999 The project to regulate the drainage of Kidron Valley from the area of the Tomb of Shimon HaTzadik in the north to Arab A-Suachara in the south, including the regulation of sewage and drainage issues in the neighborhood of HaProush along its length and much more…

And still going…

Company CEOs since its inception

  • Itshak Yaakobi 1994-1966
  • Yoel Marinov 2003-1994
  • Gidon Shamir 2012-2004
  • Beni Sasi 2013 and on
HistoryPhoto: העופל
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