Saudi Arabia is embarking on ambitious infrastructure projects to reduce its dependence on oil exports, signaling a significant shift in its construction industry. Valued at $120.4 billion in 2021, this sector is poised for growth with an expected annual average growth rate of 4% or more from 2023 to 2026. Investments in transportation, renewable energy, housing, and tourism are driving this surge, aligning with the Vision 2030 initiative. With over 5,200 ongoing projects worth a total of $819 billion, Saudi Arabia is leading in mega-city construction.
One of the standout projects is the Th Line, a smart city initiative launched near Riyadh. This $500 billion linear city, spanning 170 kilometers, prioritizes nature, sustainability, renewable energy, and advanced transportation. Another project is the NEOM high-speed rail line, a joint venture between Italian contractor Webuild and Saudi Arabian counterpart Sajco, connecting The Line with Oxagon, an innovation hub featuring interconnected floating sections reminiscent of Venice.
Green infrastructure and mixed-use developments are reshaping Saudi Arabia’s cities, enhancing resilience to environmental changes. The Red Sea Project, a sprawling luxury resort of over 30,000 square kilometers, is a prime example, emphasizing sustainability and aiming for carbon neutrality by 2030.
The construction industry of Saudi Arabia is central to Vision 2030, offering substantial job opportunities and boosting demand for skilled professionals like project managers, engineers, and architects. Saudi Arabia’s construction sector is expected to play a pivotal role in the realization of various Giga projects. Automated solutions like robotic bricklayers and AI-assisted drones are becoming common in the industry, contributing to cost reduction, time savings, and safety adherence. The integration of robotics and AI aligns with the Saudi National Industrial Strategy, aiming to establish global leadership in high-tech manufacturing.
Prefabrication technology is gaining traction, particularly in the residential sector, with Swedish modular home manufacturer SIBS securing a deal to deliver apartments to NEOM. As Saudi Arabia diversifies its economy through transformative projects, its construction industry continues to flourish, positioning the country on the global stage.