Haredi man on cellphone (Illustration)
Haredi man on cellphone (Illustration)Sarah Schuman/ Flash90

Haredi leaders are concerned for the character of their neighborhoods, as the city of Jerusalem unrolls a "facelift" plan to install shopping centers, student dormitories, and towers along the route of the Jerusalem Light Rail.

"When they create an urban upgrade like this, it may harm the modest lifestyle of tens of thousands of haredi residents who are on the seam of the haredim," write the rabbis in the haredi Hamevaser.

Haredim usually choose to create enclave communities, in order to preserve a unique Torah culture. According to the rabbis of the neighborhoods bordering the light rail, "the establishment of such busy centers, markets, and entertainment along with a leisurely and academic lifestyle, within walking distance of haredi neighborhoods creates a spiritual danger for our souls and for our children's souls."

The rabbis have called on the city municipality to consider their needs, and try to intervene in the plan's for the capital's light rail system.