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“The Line¬†project: Saudi Arabia’s Ambitious Mega City Project – Vision or Mirage?”


When it comes to big projects, Saudi Arabia has its sights set on one truly amazing project: The Line. This futuristic city, which is 500 metres tall and covers 170 kilometres, aims to transform urban living. The Line, which is expected to be completed in 2045 and could cost up to a trillion dollars, raises a number of concerns regarding technology, viability, and possible global effects.

The Context:

It’s important to understand Saudi Arabia’s broader background before analysing The Line. The country, well-known for its wide deserts and economy reliant on oil, is sincerely working to diversify. This is demonstrated by the Saudi Vision 2030 initiative, which seeks to change the economic environment of the nation. Part of this vision is NEOM, the smart city where The Line is located. Its purpose is to lead Saudi Arabia into a post-oil future.

The Concepts and Design:

The Line is more than just a city; it’s a straight marvel between two incredibly tall skyscrapers that are covered in outside mirrors. This architectural approach, which is evocative of the Arcology concept of the 1960s, aims to create an efficient and low-impact city. The fundamental idea is known as “Zero Gravity Urbanism,” which encourages three-dimensional mobility and a pedestrian-focused way of life. The city’s appeal is increased by the promise of 100% renewable energy, cutting-edge transit, and smooth artificial intelligence integration.

The attainable Advantages:

Given that The Line is close to the Red Sea and the Suez Canal, which handle 13% of world trade, supporters emphasise the hub’s potential as a trading hub. In addition, the developers guarantee a tiny, self-sufficient city with green areas, climate control, and convenient access to everyday needs. Furthermore, the possible economic diversification fits in with Saudi Arabia’s overarching objectives.

Technical challenges:

The vision is impressive, but there are questions about its technological viability. With speeds over 500 km/h, the proposed high-speed transport system pushes the boundaries of existing technology. Likewise, uncertainties are introduced by the building of 500-meter-tall mirrors and other unprecedented features. The viability of these ideas and whether current technologies can actually support such aspirations are questioned by sceptics.

Environmental Concerns:

Despite The Line’s claims of having little environmental effect, some contend that the construction of two 500-meter glass-covered towers is essentially carbon-intensive. The construction process alone could release 1.8 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide, or the equivalent of the UK’s emissions over four years, making the claim of sustainability incongruous with the massive resources needed for the project. Environmentalists are worried about how it will affect wildlife, particularly migratory birds.

Economic Viability and Foreign Investment:

The project’s enormous cost is one of its main obstacles. The project is financed by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia and is financially risky due to its reliance on oil revenues for economic stability. There are estimates that the initial $500 billion allocation may not be sufficient, resulting in an astounding $1 trillion cost. It is becoming more and more important to draw in foreign investment, but reports indicate that finding international business partners can be difficult.


In conclusion, The Line is stunning in its utopian vision, but it is still unclear how realistically achievable it will be. The fate of this ambitious project lies in its intersection with financial stability, technological feasibility, environmental responsibility, and public acceptance. Only then can it either become a shining example of progress or fade into the realm of unfulfilled dreams. The world is waiting to see if The Line turns into a game-changing reality or a mirage in the vast Saudi landscape as we watch this futuristic endeavour unfold.