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More than $800 billion is being spent to help transform Riyadh into one of the Middle East’s leading social and cultural hubs.

The money is going to double Riyadh from its current size and population. And make it a social and cultural hub for the country and the region.

Impressively, those plans include an opera house and public art shows.

It’s all part of the country’s Vision 2030 goals. And Fahd Al-Rasheed, president of the Royal Commission for the City of Riyadh, claims the makeover will be so bold that “we have not seen anything like it since Renaissance Florence.”

A new Middle East hub

As well as being kick-started by the government, the project is expected to pull in $250 billion from the private sector as Saudi looks to diversify from its current economy.

And it predicts huge growth in finance, banking, tourism and leisure events in Riyadh. Work has already started, with 18 megaprojects already underway in the city.

They’re also looking to create sustainable growth with well-thought-out transport and logistics. And they want to create a sustainable future and are going to plant seven million trees in Riyadh in the coming years.

“King Salman Park will be bigger than Hyde Park in London,” said Al-Rasheed.

We’re not entirely sure about that last quote. But we’re definitely intrigued to see what happens in the next decade!

Keep up to date with the latest news from Dubai and the region with our DubaiLAD page here.

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