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one-fifth of NEOM, saudi arabia's futuristic gigacity, is already complete according to CEO

20 percent of neom megacity project is complete


According to NEOM CEO Nadhmi al-Nasr, work on the futuristic gigacity project in Saudi Arabia is right on track and progressing rapidly. In fact, he has shared that one-fifth of the construction has already been completed.


‘I can say that we have finished what amounts to 20 percent of [NEOM’s] infrastructure and work is ongoing in 2023,’ al-Nasr told international arabic news outlet Al Arabiya (find more here) at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos. ‘The most important thing is being able to expand the infrastructure to all areas where we are ready to start building.’


neom saudi arabia
image screenshots courtesy of NEOM



The statement by Nadhmi al-Nasrby comes just one month after NEOM showed the world the documentation of the four megacities’ construction in a detailed video. In an interview with designboom, which has been updated here to include architectural names that might participate in the project, NEOM’s director of urban planning Tarek Qaddumi says that the design team started the construction of the spine in 2021 in Saudi Arabia, the infrastructure corridor that runs the whole length of one of the cities and perhaps the most known one named THE LINE.


The urban planning director admits that while the team has been looking at a beating-the-scheduled-time agenda, the first modules are hoped to be completed before 2030. ‘However, the first substantial population living on the LINE will be in 2030,Qaddumi tells designboom. Architectural firms that might take part in the megacity project include OMAAdjaye AssociatesMorphosisCoop Himmelb(l)auStudio Fuksas, Peri Cobb Freed & Partners, Tom Wiscombe Architecture, HOKDelugan Meissl Associated ArchitectsOyler Wu Collaborative, and UNStudio.


neom saudi arabia
Oxagon city



As the construction grows over time, NEOM has moved to the building phase of the project and the first destination – Sindalah – which is due to open its doors in 2024. It attempts to reassure future visitors that the unprecedented architecture is slowly turning into the next holiday destination.


The construction progress video that NEOM released in January 2023, shows real-world footage of the large-scale construction across NEOM regions including THE LINE, Trojena, Sindalah, and Oxagon. It is the first film in what will be an ongoing series showing progress at NEOM as the construction continues.


neom saudi arabia



The four manmade megacities of saudi arabia


Based on the video, NEOM calls Sindala its luxury destination dotted with arching and sloping architecture that defines the typical standards of opulence in daily living and what might seem to be private clubhouses with members-only access.


Trojena gets the go-to destination for mountain and dry-land excursions while THE LINE retains its namesake as the flagship city of the four megacities. Oxagon, the fourth city, poses as the center for advanced studies, the probable candidate of NEOM to further drive their research on only using energy sources from solar, wind, and hydrogen as it attempts to apply only renewable energy throughout the cities.




NEOM shares it will continuously document construction updates

volocopter, the aimed transportation in the region
volocopter, the aimed transportation in the region



Qaddumi shares with designboom that NEOM aims to bring back health and joy into the city, and the project hopes to give people back time instead of them being busy with tedious, daily tasks. ‘We would like to make more time for hobbies, for interests, for friends. And until then, we’ll face challenges and difficulties like any other project, but we have the ambition to make a change in urban life,’ adds Qaddumi. 


CEO Nadhmi Al-Nasr also comments that ‘if we are to solve the challenges of tomorrow, we must face up to them today, no matter how difficult they may seem. At NEOM, we are addressing some of the most pressing challenges facing humanity by bringing together a community of the brightest minds committed to reimagining what a sustainable future will look like in 20 to 30 years, and building it today. We are redefining the future now. NEOM is open for business.’

the construction of THE LINE's spine began in 2021
the construction of THE LINE’s spine began in 2021


NEOM will be releasing more short films soon


project info:


name: NEOM construction film

location: Tabuk province, Saudi Arabia

regions: Sindalah, Trojena, Oxagon, the LINE

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happening now! sky-frame’s ‘my point of view’ film presents david montalba’s surf-inspired architecture in malibu, using their expansive glass doors for uninterrupted ocean views – see the whole video on designboom! 

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