Saudi Focus

The new city in Taif ... to spread over a 1,250-sq-km area.

The new city in Taif ... to spread over a 1,250-sq-km area.

$3bn residential city on cards for Taif

November 2017

The Saudi government has approved plans for a new city to be built at an investment of $3 billion featuring more than 10,000 homes, a culture and heritage tourist centre, technology and industry parks, a university and an airport at Taif, said a report.

The project will come up over a 1,250-sq-km area on a site in the northeastern part of the city of Taif, with the tourist centre being an expansion of the popular Souq Okaz destination, reported Arab News.

A contract for the infrastructure works has already been signed for the first phase of a three-stage project to build a residential suburb of more than 10,000 homes. The $160-million development, which will spread over 12 million sq m, is the biggest in the Makkah region, the report stated.

The General Authority for Civil Aviation (Gaca) has signed a contract to develop and operate the new Taif International Airport with a group of companies including Asiad, the Contractors Association Company and Munich Airports Company. The airport will spread over a 48 million-sq-m area about 40 km from Taif and 117 km from Makkah. It will cost $800 million and is expected to be operational by 2020.

The new Souk Okaz City, in addition to its culture and heritage attractions, will also have 1,250 hotel rooms and 130 new homes. The project is being spearheaded by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, with participation from the private sector.

A consortium of global companies has been selected to design a business park called the Oasis of Technology, a joint venture between King Abdul Aziz City for Science and Technology and the Morganti Group, said the report.

The 35-million-sq-m site will accommodate projects to assemble and manufacture Antonov aircraft, make solar panels and develop solar energy, it added.

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