The Cabinet approved a plan to reinforce residential units, via the construction of 9 sq. meter protected spaces, in a range of up to 4.5 kilometers from the fence around the Gaza Strip. This range was set in light of the need to protect the forward line that is exposed to fire and given the planned capability of the Iron Dome system, which is due to be operational and in place during 2010.
The Cabinet approved a NIS 327 million budget for implementing the first stage of the plan in Sderot, Nir Am, Gabim, Erez, Ibim, Zikim, Netiv Ha'asara, Nahal Oz, Kerem Shalom, Kisufim, Mefalsim and Kramiya. The Construction and Housing Ministry will have overall responsibility for the plan, which is to be completed during the first quarter of 2009.
There are approximately 8,000 residential units within 4.5 kilometers of the fence around the Gaza Strip that currently lack protected spaces and which were built prior to 1992, when legislation requiring their construction in all new housing units came into effect.