Trees to brighten Jerusalem railway line

(JTA) — Jerusalem municipal workers are planting hundreds of trees along the light railway line currently under construction in the city.

Authorities say they hope the trees will help transform parts of the city, such as Jaffa Street, into an urban oasis, the Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported Friday. “It is without a doubt a revolution, taking a smoke-filled street and planting plenty of trees along it,” Yishai Hanun, an architect involved in the project, said.

Over the next year, some 3,500 trees are expected to be planted alongside the railway line, which is entering the final stages of construction after many delays. Municipal authorities said they chose deciduous or seasonal trees, such as the southern nettle, plantanaceae and oak, so that would provide shade in the summer and let the sun in during the relatively cold Jerusalem winters.

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