Yes, you heard that right. Taif stands to get a $3 billion facelift through the “New City.” The advisor to Makkah’s governor, Dr. Saad Mohammed Mariq, briefed King Salman on the project last Sunday at the Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah.
The King approved and stated that the project was in the spirit of serving the citizens of the Kingdom.
Situated on the North- Eastern part of Taif, the “new city” dabbed Souz Okaz, will stand on 1,250 square kilometres of land and is designed to hold 10,000 homes, tech and industry parks, a culture and heritage centre as well as a university and an airport.
The project will happen in three stages and the contracts have already been signed for the first stage to start.
This $160 million project to bring up 10,000 residential homes that will stand on around 12 million square meters, which is the biggest project of its kind in the region of Makkah.
The next phase will involve the construction of the airport, which is meant to stand on 48 million square meters of land, situated 117km from Makkah and 40 km from Taif.
The project will take a whopping $80 million a year and will take approximately 3 years to construct.
The contracts for the construction of the airport have already been signed by the General Authority for Civil Aviation, in association with Asiad, Munich Airports Co. and the Contractors Association.
In order to accommodate the level of tourist volumes the city is bound to attract, it shall have 1,250 hotel rooms as well as 130 new homes.
The Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage is taking point on the construction of the culture and heritage centre which will take $1 million or thereabout.
The project is projected to avail 4,400 jobs to cater to the expected 260,000 visitors expected to be attracted by the project. This will in turn bring back approximately $80 million to the Kingdom’s GDP.
A joint venture between the Morganti Group and King Abdul Aziz City of Science & Technology is making use of a group of global companies to construct the Oasis of Technology; a business park.
The park is designed to hold projects that will be used to manufacture and assemble Antonov aircraft, as well as develop solar energy and make solar panels.
The project does not stop there. Another Industrial City is meant to be built 55km from the Taif city centre which will take up 11 million square feet.
It will cost $35 million and will include medium and heavy industries, light and a vocational training centre.
The university is set to be built at Sysid National Park and will encompass 16 separate projects all of which will stand on 16 million square meters.
Being a big project, it is set to cost around $530 million.