Saudi Gazette report
THE new entertainment city announced by Deputy Crown Prince and Defense Minister Prince Muhammad Bin Salman is set to the first of its kind in the region.
The city to be built in Al-Qidiya, southwest of Riyadh, at a cost of more than SR30 billion, will include many activities designed for entertainment, education, adventure, sports, culture and excitement.
The foundation stone for the city is to be laid in the beginning of 2018 and the opening of its first phase is scheduled in 2022.
To be built on a 334 sq. km area, the project is expected to create more than half a million direct and indirect jobs, according to a number of economists and government officials.
“The city is a job-generating scheme and will attract huge local and foreign investments,” said Hisham Al-Linjawi, member of the Human Resources Development Fund.
He also asked for the establishment of more entertainment and tourist projects to create more jobs to the young Saudi men and women.
“The project will lead to the rise of many small and medium size ventures that will boost the national economy and help reduce unemployment among Saudis,” he added.
Fahd Al-Hammmadi, chairman of the Arab Federation of Contractors, said the project would create more than 200,000 direct jobs for the Saudis and help growth in its surrounding areas in terms of economy, entertainment and tourism.
He said the project, which involves infrastructure development, would have a positive impact on the Saudi economy.
Chairman of the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry Ahmed Al-Rajhi said the city represents the beginning of the projects under the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.
“The city will help rejuvenate many sectors such as hotels, resorts, restaurants, contracting, maintenance and others,” he said.
A number of Shoura Council members believe that the project will attract local, regional and international investments and will represent a giant leap in the Kingdom’s development.
Chairman of the council’s economic and energy committee Abdul Rahman Al-Rashid said the city would open new avenues of investment for foreign and migrant capital.
“The country needs projects that will be commensurate with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030,” he added.
Saeed Al-Sheikh, a member of the committee, said the project would create a bastion of domestic tourism where Saudis will like to spend their leisure, instead of going abroad spending huge amounts of money on tourism.
Abdullatif Al-Minaif, another committee member, said the project would make Riyadh among the top 100 cities in the world where people prefer to live.
“These are three projects in one consisting of entertainment, sport and culture,” said Muneer Nasser, chairman of the Maidnah Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
“The city will open up opportunities for feasible foreign and local investments and will create a large number of jobs for the Saudis,” he said.
Features of upcoming entertainment city
The entertainment city will be divided into 9 categories of activities:
Sports: A virtual reality world that takes you to Europe through 3D technology to live the thrill and excitement of the Champions League.
Educational center: Children in this multicultural city will enjoy pretending to work in any job they want; they will also have the opportunity to learn in an open environment full of entertainment.
Aquatic adventures: For those who have ever wondered how would it feel like to fly with a jetpack on your back or walk on water.
Outdoor adventures: Enjoy the finest and best camping experience in the desert, on the edge of QIdiya or inside a cave under a starry sky.
Shopping area: Enjoy the best and most famous international brands at competitive prices.
Accommodation: A series of high-end lodgings will be ready to accommodate you in QIdiya, as well as hotels, restaurants and other attractions.
Wildlife experience: Do you want to see the rarest wild animals and learn more about the wildlife on our planet? You will be able to do so there in the near future.
Motor Sports: This will be the favorite destination for car lovers where an autodrome will be equipped for all kinds of activities related to cars and high speed.
Heritage and Science Center: You can explore different worlds and civilizations like never before, with a state-of-the-art exhibit designed to interact with you and enrich your visit with discoveries.