Qiddiya reveals first look at Saudi ‘Capital of Entertainment, Sports & the Arts’
Qiddiya Investment Company has unveiled the much-anticipated Master Plan for Qiddiya, the “Giga-Project” being constructed on the doorstep of Riyadh that will deliver on many of the central tenets embodied in Vision 2030.
Qiddiya is set to become the Kingdom’s “Capital of Entertainment, Sports and the Arts” with facilities and experiences that will bring together new opportunities and exposure at a scale and format never before seen. By bringing together the elements for an active, healthy and ambitious lifestyle, Qiddiya will generate enormous economic opportunity, and thousands of new jobs that will catalyse the development of new sectors, contributing to a diversified and prosperous economy”.
Today’s announcement comes after an extensive design process resulting in a meticulously considered arrangement that complements the epic natural landscape and creates a series of pedestrian-oriented episodes that encourage discovery, trial and enjoyment of the broad spectrum of activities included in the plan.
Michael Reininger, Chief Executive Officer of Qiddiya Investment Company, said:
The people of Saudi Arabia share the universal desire for enriching experiences, and our plan allows Qiddiya to unlock access to these experiences in a new and culturally relevant way, encouraging personal and professional pursuits that foster enrichment.
The Master Plan for the project, created in conjunction with Bjarke Ingles Group (BIG), a Denmark-based company, was constructed with careful consideration to the natural patterns that have been etched on the site throughout history, giving rise to a green-belt network carrying visitors throughout the property on roads, bike paths and walkways built within an enhanced landscape environment. Located just 45km from Riyadh, the 334 square kilometre site envisions development covering only 30 percent of the land leaving the majority of the majestic site dedicated for natural conservation.
Bob Ward, Chairman of the Qiddiya Advisory Board, said:
This project sets a new global standard for the seamless integration of visitor-focused experiences and an innovative mix of program pieces, delivering an unparalleled entertainment destination.
The site is organised around five primary development nodes each with a unique purpose:
The Resort Core represents the heart of Qiddiya where four gated-attractions surround a central specialty retail, dining and entertainment district along with a portfolio of distinctive resort hotel offerings. Adjacent to the 15-hectare Retail, Dining & Entertainment district, is a major outdoor entertainment venue capable of hosting events from 5,000 to 40,000 visitors siting as a park like setting and punctuated with active skating and skiing facilities.
The 2022 opening phase features Six Flags Qiddiya, a family-oriented park filled with rides and attractions distributed throughout six themed lands. A second feature park is a water-oriented sports and entertainment attraction, which includes an integrated resort hotel.
The third feature is the “Speed Park” which brings together events and experiences from the world of motor sports in a venue that places equal emphasis on spectator and driver. The Speed Park includes tracks, showrooms, retail, a driver’s club and a luxury hotel within its gates.
Overlooking the Resort Core from its perch 200m above on the edge of the Tuwaiq escarpment, the City Centre is a mixed-use village dedicated to sports and the arts. Coupled to the entertainment core below by a funicular transportation system, residential, retail and workplace environments are organised around two intersecting pedestrian circulation spines linking a portfolio of feature facilities.
The City Centre is home to a collection of sports venues, including a 20,000-seat cliff-top stadium, an 18,000-seat multi-purpose indoor arena, an aquatic centre and a sports hub capable of hosting a cross-section of individual sports activities and events.
Arts and entertainment create a buzz throughout the city as they emerge from an innovative arts centre, a signature 2,000-seat performing arts theatre and a premier multiplex cinema that dot the central walkways as primary destinations.
This 24/7 city is formed with additional uses woven into the plan. A creative campus offers workspace, media production and education facilities. A grand mosque anchors one end of the city with a place for worship and community gathering.
Retail, service and dining options are delivered in a mixed use, high street setting with residences over shopfronts throughout the plan. A private school, a sports medicine hospital, and beautiful private villas along a biking/walking path on the Cliff’s Edge complete the composition.
To the North West of the Resort Core sits the Eco Core designed around a series of nature and wildlife encounters, an ecologically-sensitive golf course, outdoor sporting adventures and several unique hospitality offerings that take advantage of the picturesque desert environment.
The Motion Core to the South East of the Resort Core, will be home to events, experiences, residential and hospitality offerings that are driven by the science and technology of people in motion.
Along with a “Race Resort” where homes and club facilities provide access to a beautiful and challenging 15km performance driving course, facilities for both on-road and off-road driving experiences, driver education and destination motor sports events will be constructed within a landscape surrounded by a mountain side backdrop.
A Golf and Residential Neighbourhood sits near the centre of the property where panoramic vistas of the project are available from an array of residential and resort offerings that include a championship 18 hole golf course and club house facilities, a luxurious resort hotel and spa and equestrian facilities—all accessed from villas, townhomes and private retreats.
A range of additional retail, residential, community services and commercial support facilities are distributed throughout the property for ease of access and utility that support the modern lifestyle Qiddiya is designed to deliver.
Qiddiya brings together an expansive range of attractions and opportunities in a singular and easily accessible destination, delivered to “best-in-class” standards and allows Saudis to enjoy the entertainment and professional experiences that inspire them without having to leave the Kingdom to fulfill their ambitions.
About Qiddiya Investment Company
The Qiddiya Investment Company (QIC) was incorporated on 10th May, 2018, as a closed joint-stock company wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of Saudi Arabia. QIC will drive the development of Qiddiya, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s pre-eminent multifaceted entertainment destination, home of inspiration, discovery and engagement.
Announced by His Royal Highness Mohammad bin Salman, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister, and Chairman of the Council of Economic and Development Affairs and of PIF, on 7th April, 2017, Qiddiya is a transformational project that will be built 40km from downtown Riyadh, with a total area of 334sqkm.
Visitors will enjoy access to a range of diverse activities and services across five innovatively designed cornerstones: Sports & Wellness; Nature & Environment; Parks & Attractions; Motion & Mobility; and Arts & Culture. The development of these areas will give rise to: high-end theme parks; water and snow-based activities; numerous sports arenas capable of hosting international competitions and world-class training academies; race tracks for motorsport enthusiasts; outdoor and adventure activities alongside nature and environment experiences; and an array of historical, cultural and educational activities and events. Qiddiya will also include a variety of real estate options and community services.
A core element of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, Qiddiya will unlock tremendous opportunity, enabling economic diversification, while enhancing the quality of life for Saudi citizens.
The project broke ground on 28th April, 2018 and phase one is set to open in 2022. A three-phased approach is currently underway for the entire project. 2019 will see the launch of the Visitor Experience Centre, the reveal of the masterplan, as well as the start of construction for phase one.
Main image (top): City Centre Aerial View to Resort Core
Images, courtesy: Qiddiya
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