Contrary to most of Israel's stadiums, this one would be a private project. Even more unusually, it would also be an Israeli-Chinese joint venture. Enabling works on the 30,000-seater have already begun.
Though we'd really want that, we cannot show you all of this plan in detail. Details are one thing it's still missing, despite having been on the agenda since April, 2016. The big picture is: Hapoel Tel Aviv is about to get a brand new stadium for as many as 30,000 people, though the final capacity is yet to be confirmed.
While most stadiums in Israel are public projects, this one would be largely private, with public authorities offering only the land and road network. Not precisely in Tel Aviv, this stadium is about to be built at the south end of Bat Yam, one of the cities constituting the wider Tel Aviv urban area.
Its story began in early 2016, when Hapoel owner Amir Gross Kabiri engaged in communication with China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC), who have since visited Tel Aviv four times, most recently in early November.
CMEC is now working on establishing an Israel-based subsidiary in order to carry out the project together with Kabiri's company. The two are dependent, however, on Bat Yam municipality, who still have to rezone the selected plot. This hurdle should be cleared soon as the stadium has support of both local and state authorities.
We'd like to give you a time frame for the stadium but as of now even its renderings seem hardly credible. The internal ones present a different venue than the ones from outside, while the external ones show it in a different location than the one selected. On top of that, renders of skyboxes use the Beijing Olympic Stadium as backdrop, which only adds to the confusion. Not unheard of but hardly professional, in all fairness.