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Insights Saudi Arabia's 170km long 'linear' city

The Middle East is transforming and becoming a more attractive place to work. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) in particular is experiencing exponential growth, and has been named a top performing market in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

A smart city spanning 106 miles is just one of many exciting mega projects that have been proposed to diversify the economy in the region and improve the social and environmental prospects of KSA. Smart cities, integrating data and digital technology to improve quality of life, are on the rise around the world, and they’re especially prominent in the Middle East.

this is an image of a map showing NEOM

The Line

The government is planning to invest between $100-200 billion in a futuristic city with no cars, streets, or carbon emissions. ‘The Line’, which will be 106 miles (170 km) long, is a smart city that is planned to be developed in the northwest of the country. It is part of NEOM, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s proposed major project to diversify the predominantly crude oil-focused economy in conjunction with Vision 2030; a transformative economic and social reform program.

The proposed linear city will stretch from the Red Sea all the way to the mountains in the northwest of the country. The Line is intended to be developed with three layers for pedestrians, transport, and infrastructure. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman says that ‘autonomous mobility solutions’ and other sustainable initiatives will preserve 95% of the region’s natural environment, and the development will be a safe space for people and nature to coexist.

The Line is planned to home 1 million people and will be established in clusters of aggregated urban areas along a central ‘spine’. Essential services such as shops and schools are all expected to be within a five-minute walk, removing the need for cars and major transport systems. Proposals state that The Line will be powered by 100% clean energy and with the recent COP26 summit placing more emphasis on the importance of sustainability and the need to keep the rising climate under 1.5 degrees, this is good news.

Why work in Saudi Arabia?

Saudi Arabia is one of the most fast-paced and competitive parts of the world, with revolutionary construction developments planned to improve the future for generations to come. Mega projects like The Line will introduce a new wave of opportunities for those looking for a successful career in civil engineering, project management and quantity surveying. They offer passionate graduates and innovative professionals the chance to progress their career development, working on some of the most prestigious projects in the world.

Saudi Arabia is transforming; not only is it becoming more environmentally friendly, but also increasingly diversifying workforces. Female architects, for example, are helping the Middle East build bigger and better, offering unique ways of thinking and redefining the engineering space and making a significant impact on society. Innovative architects, both men and women, are sought after to provide designs for sustainable buildings, infrastructure and cities like The Line that can enable a safe future.

Join the AtkinsRéalis Group, including Atkins and Faithful+Gould, and help shape the future of the Middle East

At AtkinsRéalis , and within our brands Atkins and Faithful+Gould, we’ve been helping to shape the Middle East and its economies for over 50 years, developing and implementing innovative, sustainable initiatives on all our projects for all our clients.

We’ve been ranked number one in the region’s Top 30 engineering, procurement, and construction companies. Working on over 100 major projects at any given time, we have a wealth of knowledge, skills and experience and countless opportunities available across the markets.

We’re proud to be making a difference today and for generations to come. Whatever stage you are at in your career, there’s never been a better time to join us in Saudi Arabia. If you’re ready for your next big project, find out how you can build your quantity surveying career in Saudi Arabia or browse our available quantity surveying and commercial management jobs today.