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Wed 21 Oct 2015 11:44 AM

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Saudi Arabia to develop 17 new cities

Ministry of municipal and rural affairs announced plans for new small and medium sized cities across the kingdom

Saudi Arabia to develop 17 new cities

Saudi Arabia’s ministry of municipal and rural affairs has announced plans to develop 17 cities across the kingdom in a bid to improve conditions for residents.

According to local media, the project will aim to reduce the problems facing Saudi cities, including high population density, increased power consumption, and underdeveloped and disorganised residential infrastructures.

The Saudi Gazette quoted an unnamed ministry official as saying: “The project also aims at making all Saudi cities attractive for people to live and work, removing all negativities of the past.”

The official is also quoted as saying a four-year study will be conducted in order to find the best model for town planning, adding: “We have selected 17 cities in different parts of the kingdom for the project on the basis of certain criteria including population and geographical distribution.”

The project follows recommendations made by the World Urban Forum, organised by UN-Habitat in 2012.

The number of cities in the kingdom has rocketed in recent decades, increasing from 58 in 1963 to 285 in 2010.