Riyadh to Jeddah in 46 minutes

Virgin Hyperloop One to connect megaprojects including Neom, Red Sea Project

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JEDDAH — Virgin Hyperloop One is likely to reveal details of its plan to link Saudi Arabia’s NEOM, the Red Sea project, and Qiddiya gigaprojects together at The Big 5 Saudi show next week.

The company’s vice president for the Arabian Gulf, Colin Rhys, will speak at exhibition that is to be held on March 10-13 at Jeddah Center for Forums and Events.

Rhys is expected to explain how hyperloop technology can support Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 program, according to a statement released by the organizers of The Big 5 Saudi.

A graphic published alongside details of Rhys’s speech depicts a GCC alignment route, showcasing stops at Neom, the Red Sea Project, Jeddah, Makkah, Riyadh, Kuwait City, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Muscat.

Hyperloop technology could cut the time it takes to travel from Riyadh to Jeddah to 46 minutes.

Passengers will also be able to use the network to travel in pod-shaped vehicles from Riyadh to the Kingdom’s Neom gigaproject in 58 minutes.

Ahead of his talk, Rhys said the infrastructure scheme will encourage Saudi’s adoption of emerging technologies.

Hyperloop will create a “manufacturing hub” in the Kingdom, allowing the country to import and export goods at rapid speeds, Rhys added.

The system is expected to create high-tech jobs for Saudi nationals and provide an uplift in gross domestic product.

To ensure young Saudis benefit from Virgin Hyperloop One’s expertise, the company partnered with the Prince Muhammad Bin Salman Foundation (Misk) last year to provide 21 internships at its campus in Los Angeles, US.

Three of the Saudi interns now have full-time jobs with Virgin Hyperloop One. — SG


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