The Consul at Jerusalem (Heizer) to the Secretary of State

No. 1814

Sir: I have the honor to report to the Department that according to information received from London the construction of the Harbor Works at Haifa is not to be undertaken by the Government of Palestine as originally intended, but is to be built by contract. The Government expresses the hope that it will be possible to have the tenders submitted by the end of November, 1928.

For the construction of this harbor at Haifa over five million dollars have been set aside from the recent loan contracted by the Government of Palestine.

It is believed that American contractors may wish to make tenders for the work. Specifications have been asked for and as soon as obtained will be forwarded to the Department.

The following particulars are published with regard to the harbor at Haifa which it is now reported is to be built by contract.

[Page 62]

“The Harbor is to be formed by a breakwater 8000 feet in length, running N. W. by S. E. from Ras el Krum point. The existing jetty will be extended towards the end of the breakwater. The breakwater is to be built of local stone quarried in the neighborhood of Athlit.

Within the area of approximately 200 acres thus enclosed, vessels of 30 feet draught will be protected against gales and bad weather. Berthing facilities will be provided along the inside of the breakwater for about two thirds of its length, and, when the use of the Harbor warrants it, the 6000 feet of shore frontage will also be developed for quayage.

The ultimate development of the scheme will therefore give nearly 12,000 feet of berthage.

The task of determining the best alignment of the quays and breakwaters is a difficult and lengthy operation. A large number of borings are being made. Most of these borings have to be taken from floating craft and owing to rough weather the work has been much delayed.

Serious difficulties have also been met in finding a suitable site at which to establish a quarry for the stone required in the construction of the breakwaters. The whole country within twenty miles of the harbor site has been explored and trial excavations have been made at many places. The possible sites have now been limited to two and the final choice depends on investigations which are now proceeding into the comparative cost of quarrying and transport of stone at the two sites.

Government will also consider in the light of all the facts that will become available during the course of this summer what is the best method of construction.

In spite of all difficulties it is expected that the final plans will be ready by the autumn and it is hoped that the work of construction will be put in hand before the end of this year.”

I have [etc.]

File No. 815.6

Oscar S. Heizer