Religion Magazine

Too Much Tourism

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
It is tough living in the Old City of Jerusalem. Tourists all over the place, noise that echoes through the narrow paths all day and all night, events, ceremonies, security issues. It is a never-ending stream of disturbances to a normal life.
But they live in the Old City of Jerusalem.
Janglo is reporting that residents of the Old City are petitioning City Hall against the multiplicity of events and festivals, with a new one being announced to take place May 8-10 in the Old City.
According to the petition:
"Until now, the Jerusalem Municipality has produced 2 festivals a year in the Old City to attract audiences that are not used to visiting it: the festival of sounds between Purim and Passover and the festival of lights in the summer," the petition says. "Moreover, during the month of Selichot, during the Ten Days of Repentance, during the intermediate days of Succoth and Passover, during Chanukah and Lag BaOmer days, tens of thousands of visitors flock to the Old City, even without festivals."
"This year,  the festival "Hanukkalayim" was added on the last day of Chanukah and the next day," the petition adds. "Residents of the area are aware that the Old City is the number one tourist site in Jerusalem and in Israel and witnesses to the arrival of masses of visitors a year. However, there is great importance in maintaining the balance between a tourist center and a residential area. Residents are entitled to lead a normal life during festivals. The multiplicity of festivals violates the proper balance and makes life difficult for the residents. During the festivals they stop public transportation to the neighborhood, blocking other access routes (including walking!). The noise and lighting of the exhibits disturb the residents' rest, in addition to the noise and dirt of the visitors. We appeal to you to cancel the planned festival," the petition concludes. 
It isn't easy living in the middle of the densest and most popular of tourist zones...
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