A new Modi’in neighborhood is currently being built adjacent to a historic site where the remains of an ancient Hasmonean village were discovered. Called Moreshet (or “Legacy” in English), the new neighborhood includes plans for 4,300 new apartments alongside tens of thousands of square meters of business and commercial centers, restaurants, and cafes. The steep prices in this neighborhood indicate a continued rise in Modi’in real estate prices – at a staggering rate of 10% in the past two years.
Barfilia Hill is located just west of the city of Modi’in, along an ancient Roman road that once led from Jaffa to Jerusalem. Two thousand years of tumultuous history unfolded in this historic place. Its ancient name, Porphyria, was derived from the Latin word porphyria, meaning crimson. According to scholars, this name suggests that the ancient settlement was a textile dyeing center during the Crusader Era. Later, during the period of the Ottoman Empire, an Arab village was established here. However, according to members of the Hasmonean Heritage Museum, which recently opened in downtown Modi’in, settlement began as early as the days of the Hasmoneans – as evidenced by 260 ancient ritual baths found here, hinting to a large and well-established Jewish settlement on the site in ancient times.
Today, however, more than 2,000 years after the Hasmonean kingdom, the hill overlooks the intensive construction of a new neighborhood of Modi’in, which bears the meaningful name Moreshet – meaning “legacy” in English. After several years of planning and development, over the course of the past year, construction finally began on the first residential projects on the site. It did not take long for the neighborhood to become one of the most sought-after residential locations in central Israel.
The new Moreshet neighborhood in Modi’in employs mixed-use development
Among other factors, the popularity of the new neighborhood is largely attributed to its meticulous urban planning and mixed-use development. The neighborhood will include residential buildings alongside offices, stores, public buildings, healthcare centers, educational institutions, green spaces and parks, restaurants, cafes, and areas designated for leisure and recreation.
The new neighborhood is part of an umbrella agreement signed between the Modi’in-Maccabim-Reut municipality and the government to rapidly promote the construction of thousands of apartments throughout the city. The Moreshet neighborhood is expected to include 4,300 apartments, of which 70% were sold at discounted prices to first-time homebuyers as part of the Buyer’s Price campaign (mechir lemishtaken). Of these, 1,050 housing units are defined as small apartments (up to 80 square meters), and 300 are intended for sheltered housing facilities for the elderly.
Residential units in Moreshet will be built alongside 23,000 square meters of buildings designated for commercial use, employment centers, and recreational activities. According to the plans, there will also be five schools and about 20 kindergartens in the neighborhood,
Located in the western part of Modi’in, the Moreshet neighborhood has convenient access to major transportation routes connecting Modi’in to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, including Highway 1 and Highway 431.
Real estate prices in Modi’in have been climbing since 2007, with no signs of slowing down
As mentioned, a significant portion of apartments in Moreshet was sold in advance as part of the government’s Buyer’s Price program that enabled first-time homebuyers to purchase apartments in Modi’in at a discounted price.
Today a number of developers are selling new apartments, that are under construction, on the free market. 4-room apartments range between NIS 2,500,000 and 3,000,0000 shekel, while 5-room apartments are being sold for around 2,800,000 to 3,300,000 depending on size, floor, location, view, and outdoor space. Meanwhile, penthouse apartments range between NIS 4 to 5 million. Homes will be ready within 10-36 months.
According to local real estate agents, this high price level indicates a continuation of rising real estate prices in Modi’in, a trend that began in 2007 and has continued non-stop. For example, a 6-room house that was sold in 2007 for NIS 1,850,000 NIS, is now worth close to six million shekels in 2021. In the last two years alone, average apartment prices in Modi’in have risen by 10%, and even more in certain areas in the city.
While it is not clear how the new neighborhood will live up to the legacy of the Hasmoneans, it is quite clear that it will preserve a 15 year legacy of soaring Israel real estate prices in general, and Modi’in in particular. At this point, it seems that in order to curb the skyrocketing prices, buyers in the Moreshet neighborhood will need another Modi’in miracle.