Holon | Israel
Holon (Hebrew: חוֹלוֹן About this sound (audio) (help·info); Arabic: حُولُون Ḥūlūn) is a city on the central coastal strip south of Tel Aviv, Israel. Holon is part of the metropolitan Gush Dan area. In 2016 it had a population of 190,838. Holon has the second-largest industrial zone in Israel, after Haifa.
Holon was founded on sand dunes six kilometers (3.7 miles) from Tel Aviv in 1935. The Łódzia textile factory was established there by Jewish immigrants from Łódź, Poland, along with many other industrial enterprises. In the early months of the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, Holon was on the front line, with constant shooting taking place on the border with the village of Tel A-Rish to its northwest—a suburb of Arab Jaffa—and clashes also in the direction of the town of Yazur to the east. An attack by the Holon-based Haganah militia units on Tel A-Rish was repulsed with considerable losses.
After the establishment of the state, Holon expanded to include Tel A-Rish (renamed "Tel Giborim", "The Mound of the Heroes") and the orange groves of Yazur.
In February 2001, eight Israelis were killed and twenty-five were injured in a Palestinian attack on a crowded bus stop in Holon.
The image of Holon as a working-class bedroom community has changed over the years. Through municipal efforts, the city has been rebranded as a child-friendly city, offering family attractions such as the Yamit Water Park, the Israeli Children's Museum and the Israel Museum of Caricature and Comics.
Holon hosts a variety of springtime events, including the Yemay Zemer (Days of Song) Festival during Passover and a Women's Festival in March, both at the Holon Theater. Holon is also one of the host cities for the Rhythmic Gymnastics Grand Prix Series in March. Israeli violinist Pinchas Zukerman runs a summer music camp in the city for young violinists. Since the election of Mayor Moti Sasson in 1993, many cultural projects have been inaugurated. Billing itself as a "children's city," Holon is home to the Holon Children's Museum and the Mediatheque youth theater. Holon also plays host each year to a street carnival in celebration of the Jewish holiday of Purim, the Adloyada. Thousands of children dress up in costumes and the streets close down for a parade featuring colorful floats.
The Design Museum Holon, which opened in 2010 near the "Médiathèque" and the Faculty of Design of Holon Institute of Technology, is the first Israeli museum of design.
In October 2013, Holon hosted major international designers who arrived for Holon Fashion Week (known as HoF13), among them milliner Stephen Jones and BioCouture founder Suzanne Lee.
Cinematheque Holon hosts the only digital arts and media arts festival in Israel, Print Screen Festival. The festival was established 2010.
The modern city of Tel Aviv was founded in 1909 as a suburb of the Arab majority coastal city of Jaffa. The city grew rapidly in the ensuing decades thanks to Jewish immigration from Europe, with the population reaching 150,000 in 1934, and 230,000 14 years later when Israel gained its independence. Before the establishment of the state, other towns in the Gush Dan were founded as well, such as Petah Tikva in 1878, Rishon LeZion in 1882, Ness Ziona in 1883, Rehovot in 1890, and the majority of other Gush Dan cities were established before 1948.
In 1947, the Jewish population of the Gush Dan was nearly 400,000, comprising the majority of the Jewish population of Mandate Palestine. As such almost all of it was included in the Jewish state proposed by the 1947 United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine. After the 1948 Arab–Israeli War the Arab population of the region, which had been nearly 150,000 before the war, was reduced to around 10,000. They were quickly replaced by a larger number of Jews fleeing from postwar Europe and persecution in Arab countries. However, at this time many new immigrants did not come to Tel Aviv. In the 1950s towns were built on the edges of the Gush Dan, including Ashdod, Rosh HaAyin and Yavne. The nation's sole port at the time was located in the northern city of Haifa and its evolving metropolitan area making that city at least as important as Tel Aviv. At the same time the new government was trying to disperse the nation's population to the periphery, discouraging settlement in the already populated Gush Dan. This slowed the growth of the Gush Dan, but the area still more than doubled in population within 20 years of the establishment of the state. The opening of the Port of Ashdod in the southern Gush Dan also increased the area's importance, with Haifa's importance diminishing, and Tel Aviv's increasing due to its proximity to the Port of Ashdod. Tel Aviv itself witnessed population decreases in the 1970s, and 80s with outer regions of the Gush Dan with lower costs of living absorbing many people who left Tel Aviv. Only in the 1990s with the immigration of more than 1 million Jews from former Soviet Republics, 40,000 Ethiopian Jews, and many others to Israel, as well as a boom in the religious population, did Tel Aviv begin to grow again. The demand for housing increased dramatically, with new cities such as Modiin, El'ad being built, and cities like Ashdod more than doubling in population, from 83,000 in 1990, to 175,000 in 2000. In the 2000s the area continued to grow, attracting many immigrants from the Haifa metropolitan area. In 2010 the Gush Dan is home to 3,200,000 people and is the commercial, economical, cultural, and industrial center of Israel. Despite some successes in ongoing attempts by the Israeli government to encourage migration to the Galilee and the Negev, the Gush Dan retains its position as the heart of the State of Israel.