the world's most visited architecture website
i

Sign up now and start saving and organizing your favorite architecture projects and photos

Sign up now to save and organize your favorite architecture projects

i

Find the most inspiring products for your projects in our Product Catalog.

Find the most inspiring products in our Product Catalog.

i

Get the ArchDaily Chrome Extension and be inspired with every new tab. Install here »

i

All over the world, architects are finding cool ways to re-use run-down old buildings. Click here to see the best in Refurbishment Architecture.

Want to see the coolest refurbishment projects? Click here.

i

Immerse yourself in inspiring buildings with our selection of 360 videos. Click here.

See our immersive, inspiring 360 videos. Click here.

All
Projects
Products
Events
Competitions
Navigate articles using your keyboard
  1. ArchDaily
  2. News
  3. Insight into Secretive Unbuilt NEOM Megacity ahead of Saudi Royal Visit

Insight into Secretive Unbuilt NEOM Megacity ahead of Saudi Royal Visit

Insight into Secretive Unbuilt NEOM Megacity ahead of Saudi Royal Visit

Following the October 2017 unveiling of NEOM, Saudi Arabia’s $500-billion futuristic city billed as a “startup the size of a country,” details of the project's progression have been scarce. Situated close to the border with Jordan and the Red Sea, the remote area has been sealed off to visitors, leaving onlookers to speculate with minimal details, such as the announcement by Japan’s Softbank that they were investing in the megacity.

However, news carried by Reuters suggests that the project may be far more advanced than originally expected, reporting that Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has arrived in NEOM for a holiday. The news marks a break in tradition from the King’s holiday choices, typically a villa in Morocco or the South of France. Reuters also detail a design document revealed to them offering the first descriptions of what the architecture of NEOM may contain.

via NEOM
via NEOM

NEOM is envisioned as a 10,200-square-mile (26,500-square-kilometer) center for technology and business, fully powered by renewable energy. While serving as a hub for innovation in biotechnology, food, and advanced manufacturing, the megacity is also intended to be a luxury lifestyle community with “glittering marinas,” “record-breaking theme parks,” “endless parkland,” and “the world’s largest garden.”

via NEOM
via NEOM

Following the October 2017 announcement, no concrete business ventures or design concepts have been revealed. However, news of King Salman’s holiday adds credence to information provided to Reuters in February that local construction companies had been asked by the Saudi government to build five royal palaces on the site.

Insight into Secretive Unbuilt NEOM Megacity ahead of Saudi Royal Visit, The King Abdullah Economic City. Image via The Times
The King Abdullah Economic City. Image via The Times

A design document also seen by Reuters is reported to showcase “opulent buildings with modern and traditional Moroccan-style architecture featuring Islamic designs and colorful ceramic tiles” with amenities such as helipads, a marina, and a golf course.

NEOM is one of a number of projects undertaken by the Saudi government to diversify its oil-dependent economy, including the King Abdullah Economic City, pictured above, which has been in development for over ten years.

The first stage of NEOM is expected to be completed in 2025. 

News via: Reuters

View the complete gallery

About this author
Niall Patrick Walsh
Author
Cite: Niall Patrick Walsh. "Insight into Secretive Unbuilt NEOM Megacity ahead of Saudi Royal Visit" 01 Aug 2018. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/899430/insight-into-secretive-unbuilt-neom-megacity-ahead-of-saudi-royal-visit/> ISSN 0719-8884
Read comments