- Israel's newest civilian airport will be gated by a 30-meter high smart fence
- The fence will extend 4.5 km and is expected to cost NIS 300 million ($85 million)
- The Defense Ministry is also clearing 13 kilometers of old minefields, expected to be completed in the coming months
- The Eilat Ilan and Assaf Ramon International Airport is set to open in April 2018
Israel's newest civilian airport, Eilat Ilan and Assaf Ramon International Airport, will be protected by a 30-meter high smart fence, the Defense Ministry announced on Monday.
The fence, which will extend 4.5 km, has been under construction for several months and is expected to cost a total of NIS 300 million ($85 million) by its completion in the next few months. Similar to the smart fence on the Israeli-Egyptian border, it will feature electronics, sensors and detection technology to ensure that incoming and departing planes are protected from all types of threats.
"We are constantly working to strengthen the security components on all of our borders, in the face of current and future challenges," said Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman. “The unique obstacle we are currently building in the Arava to protect the new airport is yet another example of the creativity and competence of the defense establishment.”
The Defense Ministry began building the security fence along the Jordanian border last January and has, to date, completed some 30 kilometers of the barrier. Headed by Brig.-Gen. Eran Ophir, head of the army’s fence-building administration, the fence is based on the model developed for the fences deployed on the borders both with Egypt and Syria on the Golan Heights, but in accordance with the unique topography of the Arava.
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According to a Defense Ministry statement, extensive care was put into the planning of the airport's fence in such a way that it would not damage or interfere with the surrounding environment and was done alongside environmental protection authorities.
The project is being carried out by dozens of contractors from the Defense Ministry’s Engineering and Construction Department and the Border and Sewage Administration. As part of the construction of the fence, the Defense Ministry is also clearing some 13 kilometers of old minefields, which is expected to be completed in the coming months.
The new airport is the first civilian airport to be built in the country since it was founded in 1948. The airport is being built 19 kilometers north of the southern town of Eilat in the Timna Valley. It will replace the Eilat J.Hozman Aiport located in the city itself as well as the Ovda Airport located some 60 kilometers north of Eilat.
The cost of construction for the airport which is expected to handle an estimated 2,000,000 travelers a year, is estimated at NIS 1.7 billion ($483 million).
The Eilat Ilan and Assaf Ramon International Airport is set to open in April 2018.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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