Haifa metropolitan area





Conflict case


Haifa Port

Haifa is one of Israel's two secondary metropolitan areas (the other one being Jerusalem). Its population within official statistical boundaries is slightly over one million, but it stretches in practice further eastward into the Galilee to include a total estimated population of over 1.5 million inhabitants. A substantial portion of the population of the metropolitan area is Arab.

The city of Haifa, probably the most scenic coastal city in Israel, grew considerably during the period of British rule (1918-1948), being a strategic logistic center of the British in the Middle East. The major port and oil refineries in Palestine/Israel were established during those years. Since the establishment of the State of Israel it has suffered from increasing peripheralization in Israel's space-economy. Nevertheless, the city and its adjacent vicinity are still a major economic node, being the site of Israel's major technological university and the first high-technology park, where many of Israel's first high-technology corporations have been located, including a major R&D facility of Intel. Further to the northeast, the Galilee is a prime tourism destination, but suffers from economic weakness that characterises most of Israel's peripheral regions.

The boundaries of the metropolitan area were roughly delineated by planners to include a core urban area and three suburban/peripheral areas: the Arab-Jewish greater Nazareth area to the east, the Jewish-Arab Karmiel-Sakhnin area to the northeast, and the Northern coastal plain area of Akko-Nahariya. The Haifa metropolitan area has no clear ring structure, and suburban nodes of business activities, beyond manufacturing, are weak.

Eastern parts of the Galilee have rather weak ties with Haifa, and their ties with Tel Aviv are increasingly becoming stronger. The southernmost part of the Haifa district also has rather weak ties with Haifa and is in fact increasingly within Tel Aviv's orbit of influence.

At the centre of the metropolis, in Haifa bay, sits the biggest and most active port in Israel. The Haifa Bay has also been the traditional concentration of Israel's heavy and petrochemical industries, including Israel's oil refineries and is the site of major coastal conflicts between different infrastructural facilities, and between these facilities and coastal-environmental concerns, such as the establishment of a metropolitan park along a polluted stream that leads to the bay and providing access to the sea in Haifa's downtown (presently blocked by the military and civilian port).

Haifa_Bay Haifa_Bay_by_night

HAIFA_-_AKKO_Acre Controversial_aparthotel_at_the_Haifa_Beach