Givat Ram (Hebrew: גִּבְעַת רָם), is a neighborhood in central Jerusalem, Israel. Many of Israel's most important national institutions are located in Givat Ram, among them the Knesset, the Israel Museum, the National Library of Israel and the Israeli Supreme Court.
Before Israel's War of Independence in 1948, the area was known by the Arabs as Sheikh Badr. In December 1949, the Israeli government headed by David Ben-Gurion, passed a resolution to build a government precinct in Jerusalem. Givat Ram, a hill in the west of the city, which had been an assembly point for the Gadna Youth Battalions, was chosen for this purpose. The topography of the site, made up of three ridges, meshed with the idea of establishing three clusters of buildings – the government precinct, a university campus and a museum.
The Knesset, Israeli government offices and the Israeli Supreme Court are located in Givat Ram, as are cultural landmarks such as the Israel Museum, the Bible Lands Museum, the Bloomfield Science Museum, a campus of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the National Library of Israel, and the Binyanei HaUma convention center.
The northern part of the neighborhood, between the convention center and the university, where the government ministries are clustered, is officially known as Kiryat HaLeom. A new apartment project, Mishkenot Ha’uma, is being built in this area. The Wohl Rose Garden is also located in the neighborhood.
The first salvage excavation was conducted before Binyanei HaUma was built, in July- August 1949, by M. Avi-Yonah, who unearthed hewn installations, cisterns and pools of various sizes dating to the Herodian period, bricks and tiles bearing stamps of the Tenth Roman Legion, and the remains of a monastery.
In May–June 1968, before a new hotel (then the Hilton) was built south of Binyanei HaUma, Avi-Yonah conducted a second salvage excavation. He found remains of an oval-shaped potter's kiln, a preparation area for clay, and a deep water cistern. The area had been covered by a thick layer of plaster upon which were found large mortaria and many bricks, some bearing stamps of the Tenth Legion.
During the work on a new international convention center east of Binyanei HaUma, a large salvage excavation was conducted in April–September 1992 on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, but roughly 60% of the parking lot area had already been dug up by bulldozers.
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