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Friday, February 28, 2020

Modi’in is a beautiful young city that has become a popular destination for olim. Founded in 1993, Modi’in is well planned, with large swaths of protected land for parks. Designed to be Israel’s fourth-largest city, the population is almost 100,000 people–20% of whom are native English speakers (commonly called “Anglos”)–it is still in its infancy, as it is planned to grow to 240,000 residents. Steeped in history, Modi’in is located in the general vicinity of the original village of Modi’in, where Matityahu and his five sons launched the Maccabean revolt against the Greeks’ Seleucid Empire.

Centrally located, Modi’in is a commuter’s dream, boasting superior transportation infrastructure, including two train stations offering a short 20-minute ride to Tel Aviv, and exceptional inter-city and intra-city bus service. Modi’in has an excellent highway system, is only 15 minutes from Ben Gurion Airport, and is less than a half hour car ride from both Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Modi’in offers numerous shopping options with two large malls and many other retail locations. It has many restaurants, and offers a variety of entertainment options and cultural programs. The shuls come in many varieties, including Ashkenazi, Sepharad, and Yemenite. Modi’in’s chief rabbinate offers an assortment of Torah classes, the hesder yeshiva plays an integral role in the community, and Emunah sponsors a women’s morning learning program, in addition to the many shiurim offered by the local shuls.

Modi’in comprises religious and non-religious Jews, but the majority of the Anglo community consists of Orthodox Jews, most of whom are professionals (the more yeshivish/haredi crowd lives in nearby Modiin Illit, better known as Kiryat Sefer). The English-speaking residents, who are welcoming and friendly, are primarily clustered in three neighborhoods: “Givat C” is located in the center of town and has attracted a variety of age groups; “Buchman/Moriah” is nestled in the southern end and its population is 50% Anglo; and “Kaiser” is situated close to the middle of town and is still being built up. In addition, some Anglos live in the original part of town near the Azrieli Mall. All of these neighborhoods offer a mix of single-family homes (cottages) and apartments.

Although housing prices have been rising as the city has become more established, pricing is significantly lower than most neighborhoods in the center of Jerusalem. Consequently, a number of retired English-speaking olim have migrated to Modi’in due to the city’s superb public transportation system, pleasing aesthetics, fine Torah and cultural programming, broad choice of medical clinics, and excellent housing stock.

Gedaliah Borvick is the founder of My Israel Home (www.myisraelhome.com), a real estate agency focused on helping people from abroad buy and sell homes in Israel. To sign up for his monthly market updates, contact him at [email protected]

By Gedaliah Borvick