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October 6, 2014 12:53 pm

Work Begins on Final Tunnel of Tel Aviv-Jerusalem High-Speed Rail

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An Israel Railways train bound for Ashkelon. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

JNS.org – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz attended a ceremony marking the beginning of work on a massive tunnel that will be the final project of the planned Tel Aviv-Jerusalem high-speed rail line, expected to be completed in 2017.

The tunnel, which will be the longest in Israel at nearly 7 miles, will run between the towns of Sha’ar HaGai and Mevaseret Zion.

Netanyahu said that the ultimate goal is to have a high-speed rail line connecting the entire country from “Kiryat Shimona in the north to Eilat in the south” that could even one day “connect to Jordan in the east,” Israel’s Channel 2 reported.

The high-speed rail line has cost around $1.9 billion and is expected to carry passengers between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in only 28 minutes, including stops at Ben-Gurion Airport as well as the cities of Modiin and Latrun. The current rail connection between the two cities follows an old Ottoman-era rail line that takes considerably more time.

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