Imagine a city with no cars, no street, and no carbon emission. All daily needs within a walking distance of 5 minutes. A city where security, logistics, home delivery, and caregiving are performed by robots. a city with new services driven by artificial intelligence, and everything is powered by renewable energy. The trains with over 512 km/h of speed.
Saudi Arabia is developing such a country as part of its Saudi vision 2030 project. This city is called Neom. The word Neom is constructed using two words Neo which means new and M is the abbreviation of the Arabic word Mustaqbil which means future. So Neom means the New Future. The project has an estimated cost of $ 500 billion. Neom is planned to incorporate smart city technologies and also function as a tourist destination. Artificial intelligence will monitor the city and use predictive and data models to figure out ways to improve daily life for citizens.
Neom is located in the Tabuk province of Saudi Arabia. The city is north of the Red Sea, east of Egypt across the Strait of Tiran, and south of Israel and Jordan. It will cover a total area of 26,500 km2 and will extend 460 km along the coast of the Red Sea. The climate in the region is cooler and wetter than the rest of the country
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Need for Neom
The economy of Saudi Arabia is heavily dependant on Oil. The petroleum sector accounts for 90% of Saudi export earnings. It is not wise to depend country’s economy entirely on nonrenewable sources. So Saudi Arabia wants to reduce its dependency on oil and diversify its economy. For that Saudi is investing a lot in tourism. A project like Neom will enhance tourism in Saudi Arabia. It is claimed by the Saudi government that Neom will create 380,000 jobs, spur economic diversification, and contribute 48 billion US dollars to domestic GDP by 2030.
The line is the first development in Neom. The project unveiled plans for The Line, a 170 km long linear city within the Neom area that is supposed to have 1 million citizens. The city was unveiled on January 10, 2021, by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. according to Saudi officials, the 170 km line can be covered in just 20 minutes, which means trains with 515 km/hr of speed would be needed. Robots would perform functions such as security, logistics, home delivery, and caregiving and for the city to be powered solely with wind and solar power.
How will the Line work?
The city would be divided into nodes. The Line will consist of three layers, including one on the surface for pedestrians, one underground for infrastructure, and another underground for transportation.
The ground level would be a complete pedestrian layer, with no cars or streets. This area would be rich in green belts. This layer would only include houses and parks.
The second layer would contain the shops and other daily services. All daily services would be reachable within a 5-minute walk in the ground layer. Shopping malls, general stores, medicals stores, or other goods or services that can be needed by a person would be in this layer.
The third layer would be transportation. The transportation layer will include a very fast rail system that would transport the goods and passengers at a speed of 515 km/hr. People can travel from one end of the city to the other in just 20 minutes. Instead of cars or personal vehicles, this mode of transportation will be used to travel from one place to another.
Saudi Arabia is developing Neom over a region that is already inhabited. It is estimated that 20,000 people will be forced to relocate to accommodate the planned city.
there is a tribe living in that area called the Howeitat tribe. the leader of that tribe posted a video on the internet that Saudi security forces were trying to evict him and his tribe to make way for the development of Neom. This man was later killed by the Saudi forces.