Jaradat: young, female, educated, professional, independent. Rawabi: new, modern, clean, high spec and hi-tech. Both represent a break with the past, but their potential is mired in the cyclical violence and political obduracy characteristic of this part of the world.
Our tour of #Rawabi – Arabic for “hills” – takes us through the first two city neighbourhoods to be completed since construction began in 2012. Seven hundred apartments have been sold, with the first residents moving in last autumn. Eventually, Rawabi will have a population of 25,000 in the core high-rise city, which could rise to 40,000 with future expansion.
The city is an urban planner’s dream, and the antithesis of the noisy, rubbish-strewn chaos of most Palestinian towns. The apartments have spectacular views over the biblical landscape of the West Bank. Birds of prey soar through the golden evening light. From the highest spots, it is possible to see the Mediterranean glinting beyond the Tel Aviv skyline, 25 miles away.