Lake Kinneret, the only natural freshwater lake in Israel, is drying out due to an increased demand for fresh water and climate change. As a mitigation strategy, the Israeli government designed the Reverse Water Carrier, an innovative project to prevent the decline of water levels at Kinneret. The goal of this project is to pump desalinated water from the Mediterranean Sea through the dried-out channel of Zalmon stream to refill the lake. The main challenge of this action is the unknown influence of desalinated water on the Kinneret ecology. Also, the Zalmon stream should be redesigned to accommodate the new flow volume and velocity.
The vision of my project is to take advantage of this unique opportunity by utilizing the proposed water flow to rehabilitate the Zalmon stream and the Kinneret shoreline. The site plan and the redesigned Zalmon stream will allow us to investigate the effects of desalinated water on the environment and establish resilient habitats. In addition, the interface of the stream estuary with the proposed shore development will be a key point for research, nature, and tourism.
The design framework will be divided into three stages: (1) redesign the Zalmon stream channel and estuary, (2) create connections to and from the new shoreline, and (3) redesign the future hotel development on Migdal beach while considering its environmental and social impacts. The redesign of the stream channel will focus on preparing it for the flow volume and will develop from an investigation of the current situation. For example, expanding the stream channel will prevent flooding and soil erosion. In addition, the restored stream will provide new recreational spaces for the surrounding communities and will allow an ecological connection to the local landscape. The proposed location and design for the hotel on Migdal beach will transform the coast from being vulnerable to human impacts and climate change into a harmonious space, where nature and public thrive next to each other. Through landscape architecture planning and design, this project aspires to restore water balance in the Kinneret, rehabilitate surrounding habitats, create a new and healthy ecosystem, ultimately strengthening social values and embracing the lake’s cultural heritage.