This is the largest construction project in the world that is being built in Saudi Arabia

This is the largest construction project in the world that is being built in Saudi Arabia
This is the largest construction project in the world that is being built in Saudi Arabia

With structures that defy the limits of physics and promise zero gravity, “The Line” is emerging as a global architectural milestone within the Neom megaproject. (NEOM/AFP/Getty Images)

The project Neom in Saudi Arabia is one of the most ambitious construction initiatives in the world, planning to erect an area the size of Massachusetts completely from scratch.

This development includes proposals such as ski resorts in arid areas and architecture that seems straight out of a science fiction movie, including giant airports, high speed trainsand desalination plantswith the intention of attracting a population larger than that of the city of NY.

Within Neomhighlights the project “The Line”, which is planned to be the largest building in the world in terms of floor area, equivalent to more than 60 buildings the size of the Empire State Building. It is a linear city Consisting of a pair of parallel towers, spaced 198 meters apart, covered in mirrored glass that reflects the red sand of the desert and the blue of the sea.

The towers will reach a maximum height of 500 meters above the desert ground level, varying their height in certain areas depending on the terrain.

Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman sees Neom as the symbol of economic diversification away from oil. (REUTERS/FILE)

In accordance with The Wall Street Journal, This project promises more than 650 million square meters of useful space, it will house in your inner space apartments, offices, schoolspolice stations, museums and even a royal palace.

The priority of this dazzling and expensive architectural project, according to statements by the crown prince Mohammed bin Salman to directors of Neomis to achieve a feeling of “zero gravity” with structures that seem to defy physics and float.

The estimated cost for Neom is located at approximately 500 billion dollarswhich represents 50% more than the country’s entire federal budget for the year, and more than half the value of its sovereign wealth fund and is seen by the prince Muhammadas a symbol of the kingdom’s economic transformation ambitionsmoving away from dependence on oil towards a diversified economy and attractive to international investors and talents.

The project Neom has been compared by the prince Muhammad with the Great Pyramids of Egypt. However, the challenges are monumental, from the need to house more than 100,000 additional workers in a desert region, to managing the massive material requirements that could influence global prices and make them difficult to supply.

This ambitious project suffered a reduction in scale from the first phase of the development of The Linewhich was initially anticipated to span about 16 kilometers, initial construction is now expected to be limited to around 2.4 kilometers by 2030.

Despite its ambitious start, Neom has shown limited progress in seven years. (HamadI Mohammed/REUTERS)

“The design of the city itself has sparked debates between architects and urban planners”. The idea of ​​creating a “linear city” represents a historic challenge, as cities tend to naturally expand in a more circular shape around a central core. “It’s fighting the whole history of the way cities are founded and grow.”commented John E. Fernandezprofessor in the department of architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to the Wall Street Journal.

Neom has made limited progress since its launch seven years ago. Despite currently having film studios and a royal complex that includes palaces, a golf course and at least ten heliports, the constructions promised as part of this technological enclave are still in the initial stages.

Neom has made limited progress since its launch seven years ago. Despite currently having film studios and a royal complex which includes palaces, a golf course and at least ten helipads, the constructions promised as part of this technological enclave are still in the early stages.

The project has allocated more than $5 billion to the construction of workforce housing that has already been built. (Planet Labs PBC/AP)

Among the tasks recently completed, the excavation of a canal of approximately 97 kilometers through the desert stands out, cataloged by Neom as the largest in the world. However, expectations for emblematic projects such as The Line are still far from materializing.

Neom not only aims to transform the desert landscape with architectural and urban innovations, but also to establish a precedent in terms of sustainability. However, reality presents contradictions, since, despite promising a zero-emissions operation, contracts have been requested to build two gas plants that would add 800 megawatts of power, necessary to sustain the region until access to greener energy sources is achieved.

Despite the complexities inherent to a project of this magnitude, the effort of settlement and conditioning of residential areas for workers and administrative staff, with facilities that include schools, basketball courts and services from international chains such as Burger King and Starbucks. The project has allocated more than 5 billion dollars to building housing for construction workers, according to MEED, a Middle Eastern trade publication that closely follows Neom’s contracts.

 
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