KKL-JNF's Pinchas Kahana Receives Israel Planners Association Prize

Tuesday, February 25, 2014 12:13 PM

Pinchas Kahana has been working in KKL-JNF since 2000, specializing in the field of multidisciplinary planning.

On Thursday, February 20, the Israel Planners Association awarded its most prestigious prize to KKL-JNF's Pinchas Kahana at its annual conference, which took place at the Hebrew University campus on Mount Scopus.

Pinchas Kahana (left), with the Israel Planners Association Prize Giving Committee.
Photo: Courtesy of the Israel Planners Association

"By awarding the 2014 Israel Planners Association Prize to KKL-JNF Planning Director Pinchas Kahana, the prize committee is also expressing its appreciation of KKL-JNF, whose activities reflect its love of the land of Israel and its commitment to Zionist and environmental values," a representative of the prize committee said. 

This year's conference was entitled Planning with Open Edges, and the opening session featured a lecture by Professor Ronald Shiffman of the Pratt Institute of New York on "Decision avoidance or getting to the heart of the matter."

Photo: Courtesy of the Israel Planners Association

Pinchas Kahana
has been working in KKL-JNF since 2000, specializing in the field of multidisciplinary planning. As part of his professional work at KKL-JNF, and also as a volunteer, Kahana participates in committees and organizations that promote environmental and social values, in addition to being responsible for every important subject that is dealt with in the framework of long and short-term planning.

KKL-JNF’s Planning Division provides the basis for the organization’s long-term planning and represents KKL-JNF on statutory committees such as the Planning and Construction Committee, steering committees, National Zoning Plan committees, UNESCO, and more. It is also responsible for the monitoring and ongoing management of the national zoning plan for forests (National Zoning Plan 22), acting as a professional consultant in this regard. It provides consultation for legislation affecting forests and open spaces, such as the planning reform, which includes changes to the planning and construction law, forest law, grazing laws, and more.

According to the prize committee, "Pinchas Kahana fills all the requirements for a recipient of the prize. Over the past fourteen years, as part of his work at KKL-JNF, he has been responsible for protecting Israel's forests, and has adopted a multi-purpose policy that integrates diverse yet complimentary goals. This includes the restoration and renewal of Israel's forests, planting trees along streambeds to prevent erosion, and recognizing the importance of forests for nature and for the benefit of the general public. Besides the ecological impact of his work, he has promoted environmental education that has increased awareness of Israel's outdoors as a focus of recreational and leisure time activities for all the different sectors of Israel's populace."

View of Jerusalem from the Hebrew University on Mount Scopus.

Mayor of Jerusalem Nir Barkat. Photos: Tania Susskind

Speaking to conference participants before Kahana was awarded the prize, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat identified three major functions of Israel's capital city that determine future planning considerations: "Jerusalem is one of the spiritual centers of the world, it is the capital of Israel, and it has a population of 850,000 people who need municipal services. We are committed to creating infrastructure for both local residents and also for the many tourists who visit our city. We are investing in our city's open spaces, such as the Jerusalem Metropolitan Park that will eventually encircle the city. I have no doubt that the processes we are setting in motion will benefit from cooperation between the municipality, private planners, and organizations for whom realizing Jerusalem's potential is one of their primary goals."