Tel Aviv's Sarona neighborhood. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

While many people conjure up images of iconic Bauhaus architecture or gorgeous beaches when they think of Tel Aviv, this Mediterranean city was recently recognized for its awesome variety of tree species from around the world.

By: United with Israel Staff

Tel Aviv, already world-renown as a startup capital for tech entrepreneurs, was recently recognized by no less than the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for the flora it offers on display. Indeed, Tel Aviv was ranked in the top 20 of cities worldwide in MIT’s “Treepedia,” a database that generates “Green View” ratings based on canopy coverage scores from Google Street View data.

Tel Aviv earned a Green View score of 17.5%, outranking New York City (13.5%) and London (12.7%). Singapore earned top honors with a score of 29.3%, indicating that this Asian metropolis provides residents the greatest amount of shade compared to other cities.

“We all love trees, and their contribution to cities can be extraordinary in terms of our collective well-being,” said Treepedia director Carlo Ratti, reported The Grapevine. “Increasing a city’s tree canopy contributes to lowering summer temperatures by blocking shortwave radiation and increasing water evaporation. … [Trees’] absorptive root systems also help avoid floods during severe rains and storm surges. So overall, trees are pretty awesome.”

According to The Grapevine, Tel Aviv counts more than 260,000 trees in its environs, which cover 20 square miles. These impressive stats represent the fruits of hard work on the part of Tel Aviv city officials, who have pushed to upgrade green spaces and invest in naturalistic promenades.

The “greening” of Tel Aviv has been accompanied by other efforts to improve the city, which include a state-of-the-art rowing center on the Yarkon River to promote the sport of crew to a new generation of Israelis.

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Source: United with Israel