IDF releases plans for train network in West Bank

(JTA) — The Israel Defense Forces publicized plans to build a network of high-speed trains that would run between West Bank population centers and connect them with Israel, Jordan and Syria.

The network, according to a blueprint announced Wednesday by the IDF’s Civil Administration, would by 2035 carry up to 30 million passengers on nearly 300 miles of track between 30 cities. It would run across the West Bank and would connect with major Israeli cities, as well as with border crossings into Jordan and Syria.

Because the network would run through Areas A and B in the West Bank, which are Palestinian-controlled, the project would need approval from the Palestinian Authority to move forward. So far, the PA has refused to cooperate.

In addition, the project’s high cost could delay it for years even if it were approved.

“There is no intention to advance the plan to the implementation stage at this time,” said an official from Israel’s Transportation Ministry, according to the Times of Israel. “This is just on paper. It’s not going to be built for years.”