Saudi Arabia has embarked on another mega project, worth $23 billion, that will see 9% of Riyadh become green (it’s currently at 1.5%). The project is comprised of four projects that cover an area of 540 square km. The project aims to use the private sector with many PPP schemes, leveraging private and public involvement in transforming the city.
The four projects are the King Salman Park, Al Masar Sports Boulevard, Riyadh Art and Green Riyadh. Construction began in the second half of 2019 and the expected completion is 2023-2024, while Green Riyadh is set for completion in 2030.
King Salman Park
The park will include various gardens that’ll cover 400,000 square metres, 7.2km of circular walking trail and an 800,000 square metre valley with water and aquatic elements covering 300,000 square metres.
The Royal Arts Complex will also reside here covering 400,000 square metres complete with 2500 seating capacity National Theatre, open-air theater for 8,000 spectators, 3 screen cinema and 4 arts academies and 7 museums.
Al Masar is a 135km of cycling path that goes through the city to the outskirts of Riyadh, mixing sports facilities, wellness, entertainment and retail. It also includes 123km of horse riding trails with safe and wooded walking trails, 3.5 million square metres of green areas and open spaces, stops and rest areas for bikers, and including bike repair sites, cafes and stores.
The riyadh art project aims to curate 1000 pieces and other works of art and host an annual art festival. The biggest art undertaking the region has known and attract talent from near and far.
Green Riyadh is a citywide greening initiative which includes the planting of 7.5 million trees in public parks, schools, mosques, parking areas, health facilities, government buildings, universities and public roads. The project will help lower the temperature of the city by 2 degrees and provide welcome shade to residents.