Overlooking the Old City of Jerusalem from the south, this 1,300-foot-long promenade was funded by the Haas family and named for Walter and Elise Haas. It connects with the Sherover Promenade to the north and west, and with the Goldman Promenade to the east (the three promenades are collectively known as the Armon Hanatziv Promenade). Completed in 1987, it was the first of the three to be constructed and was the result of a collaboration between landscape architects Lawrence Halprin and Shlomo Aronson. Aronson completed work on the Sherover Promenade in 1989, which adjoins the western end of the Haas Promenade via a grand staircase, while the Goldman Promenade was completed in 2002 by Halprin and Bruce Levin.
Made of tan-colored Jerusalem stone quarried from the local hills, the Haas Promenade was designed to blend with the architecture of the Old City. It traces part of the route of an ancient aqueduct that carried water from Solomon’s Pools, south of Bethlehem, to Jerusalem. Under one portion of the promenade, Halprin incorporated an arcade reminiscent of the Roman arches that supported the aqueduct, while the piers of the low promenade wall are capped by smooth, half-round stones whose shape recalls the Dome of the Rock, to the north. Accented by wrought-iron railings and light standards that were meticulously designed by Halprin, the promenade has several belvederes that frame views of the Old City. Below and north of the promenade is the Peace Forest, as well as the ten-acre Ana and Moise Trottner Park, whose slopes are planted with groupings of cypress and rows of olive trees, which recall the groves and fields of nearby vernacular villages, as well as the Mount of Olives, visible in the distance.
The principle issue for the promenade is ongoing maintenance – and attention to detail matters. The tops of the original and elegant light fixtures Halprin designed have been replaced with generic and inappropriate elements, and the plant materials are diminished. At present, there is no mention of Halprin on websites connected with the promenade.
Israeli-born, Porath studied in Bezalel Art School in Jerusalem. She has always felt drawn to photography as a means of representation. Fifteen years ago she learned how to bind books and how to make handmade photo albums, which led her to develop a unique bindery business supplying customized photo albums for private clients. Porath has recently expanded her business to include a publishing house for book-art.