Saudi Arabia's Jeddah Central Development Company (JCDC), a wholly-owned company of Public Investment Fund (PIF) has signed a development contract with Modern Building Leaders (MBL) for its 75 billion Saudi riyal ($20.4 billion) Jeddah Central Project.

The mega project, previously known as New Jeddah Downtown, is being developed on a 5.7 million square metre (sqm) of land overlooking the Red Sea.

The contract marks the beginning of the project’s first phase between Al-Salam Royal Palace and water desalination plant, JCDC said in a press statement.

Contract terms include:

  • Demolition of nearly 400 buildings within the city’s existing infrastructure.
  • Redirection of water, electric, and waste management infrastructure services across 6.5 km.
  • Dredging works, marine drilling, and backfilling using the same drilled materials (estimated to amount to 4 million cubic metres).
  • Soil testing, and construction site preparation across a 1.5-million sqm area.
  • 2.5 km of sea berths and yacht marinas, floating berths within the marina and 1.5 km of waterfront berths.
  • Outfitting city’s public and private beaches with modern new facilities.

The statement said the project, consisting of three phases, aims to develop a global destination in the heart of Jeddah while maintaining and enhancing the city’s coastal and marine sites, including a 9.5-km shoreline, 2.1 km of sandy beaches, and a world-class marina to accommodate local and international yachts.

It said the master plan also includes construction of four major landmarks -  a museum, an opera house, a stadium, and an oceanarium, which includes a coral farm, and 10 recreational and touristic areas.

JCDC also plans to construct 17,000 housing units for citizens and more than 3,000 hotel rooms, the statement noted.

In March 2022, JCDC had said that Phase 1 would span an area of 1.5 million sqm, and would be completed by the end of 2027.

(Writing by SA Kader; Editing by Anoop Menon)