Em Hamoshavot Interchange
Em Hamoshavot InterchangeCourtesy

Beginning this week, the new “Em Hamoshavot” interchange is set to open – and drivers are hoping that the promise of smoother traffic flow between Tel Aviv and its eastern suburbs evoked by the interchange comes to pass.

The NIS 190 million project will allow traffic to flow freely from the Em Hamoshavot neighborhood of Petah Tikvah through that city's Kiryat Aryeh industrial zone, into the new industrial zone of Bnei Brak (where the Ayalon Mall is located), and on to Kiryat Atidim and Ramat Hahayal in Tel Aviv. Until now, the only way to get to all of these locations was via surface streets – a fact that caused untold traffic problems nearly every day.

The ambitious project required the construction of a bridge over Highway 4, the addition of ramps, and service roads. Officials of the Israel Highway Company (Ma'atz) said that the project was needed now more than ever, as traffic on Jabotinsky Street, the main artery between Petah Tikvah, Bnei Brak and Ramat Gan was now heavier than ever – as anyone who has driven there knows well - and would be getting even heavier, as construction begins on the Tel Aviv suburban light railway in the coming years.

“This is one of the most important interchanges in the Dan region, and will allow us to continue developing the economy of this area,” Transport Minister Yisrael Katz said Tueday. “The new interchange will allow easier and safer access to business districts, making it easier for people to get to their jobs and enhancing the economic development of Bnei Brak, Petah Tikvah, Ramat Gan and Tel Aviv. It will also make a splendid alternative to overcrowded Jabotinsky Street, especially with the upcoming construction of the light rail,” he added.