What is NEOM? All about the visionary project in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is no stranger to news that causes a stir and surprises in the media world, especially due to the choices made by the Crown Prince.

Saudi Arabia is no stranger to news that causes a stir and surprises in the media world, especially due to the choices made by the Crown Prince and Prime Minister, Mohammad Bin Salaman Al-Saud.

For just over a year now, the heir to the Saudi throne has shown the revolutionary city The Line to the public. This has a unique form to be defined as a city, and also occupies a central role in the NEOM project, which is in turn contained in the nation’s overall development program known as “Saudi Vision 2030”.

What does “Saudi Vision 2030” is?

Saudi Vision 2030 is one of the most important development programs launched by Mohammad Bin Salaman (hereafter MBS). Announced in April 2016, it envisages large investments for the development of the nation in many crucial sectors. but mainly concerns the reduction of dependence on the oil economy, which today constitutes a large portion of GDP.

Saudi Arabia is, in fact, the nation with the most crude oil reserves in the world, second only to Venezuela. Playing a central role in the development and financing of this futuristic project are the Public Investment Fund (PIF) and one of the world’s largest oil companies, ARAMCO.

The project launched by the Crown Prince has various fields of investment. From fiscal sustainability, transport, industrial and logistical development. But also housing and social development programs.

What is NEOM?

NEOM is one of the major projects launched by MBS in the wake of Vision 2030, considered a key point for the development and improvement of mankind. The project has 4 objectives:

  • growth and diversification of the Saudi economy;

  • become the residence of over a million people and that residents accept diversity and cultural differences (exclusive residences for royalty are also planned);

  • introduce a new model of urban sustainability, achieve new standards for community health and environmental protection through the use of new technologies;

  • include “mixed communities”, sporting events, research, entertainment and tourism.

From this we can understand that it is a program that has a very important long-term vision for the nation, which seeks in some way to renew the Saudi Kingdom, even if six years have now passed since its launch and probably as many will pass before of realization.

The Crown Prince claims that NEOM can also be an important point for the development and use of new, virtual realities, although, for now, it remains only a slogan on the site.

NEOM is therefore a complex of multiple projects that is located in the province of Tabuk, which is located in a very strategic point on a geographical level. The area in question is located on the shores of the Red Sea, practically in front of Egypt and one of its most popular destinations for cruises and travel, Sharm el-Sheik.

Precisely with the proximity to the latter, the two nations plan to connect the Arabian peninsula and Egypt with a bridge that crosses the strait and the nearby islands. The Crown Prince’s project can be considered a challenge to a series of similar proposals developed by his neighbors.

The three NEOM projects

NEOM is divided into three regions with related project programs. The Line, Trojena and Oxagon. These three have specific functions and objectives:

  • Trojena is located to the north, on the NEOM mountains, and a program of functions that it will have to carry out based on the seasons has already been hypothesized about it, such as: the winter season, with the mountains snowy, skiers and snowboarders. Or the Season of Adventure (March May). Of the lake (May-September) and finally the wellness season (September-November);

  • Oxagon, on the other hand, presents itself as a futuristic industrial hub, divided into various sectors, to be developed between land and sea, where the largest floating plant in the world will be present. Obviously the complex will have an octagonal structure and shape. This new project will be built in the south of NEOM, and has a crucial location given its proximity to the route of merchant ships that are headed towards the Strait and the Suez Canal;

  • Finally, The Line, recently one of the most discussed projects in the media, especially due to its particular shape, i.e. a straight line in the desert. The city aims to be an example of new urban planning systems that develop vertically, among other things it emerges that there are gardens between one floor and another.

The Line aims to be 100% renewable, all the necessary energy will be produced from renewable sources, and therefore 0% emissions. Inside, the absence of roads also emerges and has been replaced with a system of high-speed trains capable of covering 170km in 20 minutes.

Read also: What we know about the maxi-drone agreement between Turkey and Saudi Arabia

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