On 10 Jan, Sunday, the presently crowned prince of Saudi Arabia announced the launch of a new city and has pledged the nation to build a car-free city, dubbed as ‘The Line.’ The prince disclosed his plans to build a zero-carbon city at NEOM, which is the first, foremost construction project for the $500 billion flagship business zone aimed at expanding and diversifying the economy of the largest oil exporter of the world. The construction of this project is a significant step towards developing Saudi Arabia’s futuristic NEOM business zone.
The outlined and highlighted keys of “The Line” project by Mohammed Bin Salman are zero cars, zero streets, zero carbon emissions, and Artificial Intelligence.
According to the de-facto ruler of the oil-rich kingdom, the Saudi prince told reporters about his zero-carbon city, “The Line” that it would extend and lengthen over 170 km (105 miles) and will have enough capacity to house a million citizens and residents in “carbon-positive urban developments powered by 100% clean energy. He also cleared that his new project, “The Lines,” will have necessary facilities like schools, health centers such as hospitals, and green spaces.
On his occasional televised presentation, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, Prince Mohammed bin Salman said about the city, known as “The Line” that,
“Why should we sacrifice nature for the sake of development? We need to transform the concept of a conventional city into that of a futuristic one.”
In the northwestern city of Al Ula, the project concluded three years of groundwork and preparation, adding that its infrastructure would cost $100 billion to $200 billion. The backbone of investment in the project ‘The Line’ will come from the $500 billion support to NEOM by the Saudi Arabia government, PIF, and local and global investors over ten years.
The sovereign wealth fund of the Saudi Kingdom, the Public Investment Fund (PIF), is the founding investor in NEOM business zone, a 26,500-square-km (10,230-square-mile) which will be a high-tech development on the Red Sea with several zones, including industrial and logistics areas, planned for its expected completion till 2025.
NEOM expected to pocket in billions
Artificial Intelligence is an essential and targeted venture of this project. A high-speed public transport system is planned to travel within the pedestrian city, which is expected to take no more than 20 minutes. According to the official statement of NEOM,
“It will be powered by 100 percent clean energy, providing pollution-free, healthier and more sustainable environments for residents.”
Since the official announcement of NEOM by de facto ruler Prince Mohammed to much fanfare in 2017 as a pillar and foundation of his Vision 2030 plan to purge Saudi Arabia of its reliance and dependence on crude oil revenues, there have been few other announcements regarding NEOM.
According to the Saudi Statement, the construction of this project, “The Line,” is expected to kick-off at the start of the first quarter of 2021, and that the city was predictable to contribute $48 billion to the gross domestic product of Saudi Arabia kingdom and create 380,000 jobs. No estimated value was announced for the project.