TEL AVIV (Aug. 11)
The Roman Catholic cathedral dedicated yesterday by Pope John Paul II in the Ivory Coast capital of Abidjan was built by the Israeli construction firm of Solel Boneh, working in joint partnership with the Ivory Coast government. The Pope visited the Ivory Coast during a tour of West and Central Africa.
The second largest Roman Catholic cathedral in the world, after St. Peter’s in Rome, it was built in just under two years. The cathedral, which has three bell towers (the highest reaching to 70 meters), can hold 6,000 persons. It is located on a 30-acre plot and cost about $15 million to build.
Solel Boneh officials were present at the dedication ceremony and were presented to the Pope during his visit.
The Abidjan cathedral is not the first major church built by Solel Boneh. The firm, owned by the Histadrut and the largest construction firm in Israel, also built the new Church of the Annunciation in Nazareth.