More than 98% of the total contract value has been awarded to Saudi companies, the developer says
The Red Sea Development Company (TRSDC), the developer behind AMAALA, has announced tangible progress across the project, with more than 300 contracts signed to date, worth in excess of US$1.7bn.
In a statement, TRSDC said more than 98% of the total contract value has been awarded to Saudi firms, highlighting the commitment towards strengthening the local economy. These include agreements for the design and build of state-of-the-art accommodation and facilities at the destination for future employees. An additional $1.62bn of contracts is currently out to tender, across 54 proposals.
“Surpassing 300 contract awards underscores the scale of this project and the significant progress being made, as we press ahead with activity on the ground to bring our destination to life. At AMAALA, we are working to create a sustainable, purpose- and meaning-driven destination for the discerning traveller and remain closely aligned with the goals of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, as we develop one of the top global tourism destinations of the future. I am delighted to be able to showcase the results achieved by our brilliant team and partners,” said John Pagano, Group CEO of TRSDC.
In April 2022, TRSDC and the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority inked a deal focused on innovation in smart technology, while later in the month, the developer announced the successful rollout of solutions to boost productivity and enhance health and safety.
Spanning over 4,155sqkm of pristine terrain and set within the Prince Mohammad bin Salman Natural Reserve, the first phase of AMAALA is focused on the Triple Bay masterplan. Eight hotels and upwards of 1,200 hotel keys are set for completion in 2024.
Work is said to be well underway on-site to progress the enabling infrastructure and groundwork required to develop the destination, with more than 2,400 staff already on site and 9.9m manhours logged to date. This includes the successful completion of 11km of roads ahead of schedule to better connect the site. The entrance for Triple Bay is under construction and expected to be completed by October 2022, the developer noted.
The first section of the Construction Village, a home to 5,000 construction workers, is now operational, while an additional two sections are in progress to provide accommodation for a further 10,000 workers, the TRSDC commented. Secondary infrastructure works are also in progress for the development of the first phase of AMAALA’s world-class accommodation at the Employee Village in Triple Bay, set to accommodate nearly 20,000 employees who will eventually operate the destination.
In June, TRSDC and ARCHIRODON completed the installation of the last connecting piece for the crucial Shura Bridge project.
Construction on the destination’s transport links has also commenced, with the air-side infrastructure works for the destination’s new airport progressing on schedule. The fast-track contract for the works was awarded to Rawabi BUTEC in 2020 and includes the development of the airport’s 3,150m runway, taxiways and aprons, alongside additional infrastructure.
Rawabi BUTEC Chairman, Abdulaziz AlTurki, said: “This project is a cornerstone of Vision 2030, and it is an honour for Rawabi BUTEC to contribute to such a unique destination. We look forward to applying our sustainable design and construction know-how to ensure the safe and timely achievement of delivering the new airport, while preserving the exceptional surrounding environment.”
In addition to key infrastructure construction, AMAALA is breaking ground across its tourism offering. Bulk earthwork is in progress, with nearly 50% of the total fill quantity completed to date in key super plots. This includes the AMAALA Yacht Club, the Red Sea Marine Life Institute, The Marina and the Wellness Core, as well as three of the first hotels.
In June, the developer highlighted the exterior and interior design of the Triple Bay Yacht Club.
In line with TRSDC’s broader commitment to responsible development across its expanding portfolio, AMAALA aims to operate with a zero-carbon footprint. Like The Red Sea, the destination will be powered by renewable energy with no connection to the national grid and will send zero waste to landfill.
“From the rich natural capital that surrounds our site to the local communities, AMAALA’s masterplans are deeply grounded in maximising positive environmental, economic, and cultural impacts. As we transform our regenerative commitments into concrete actions, the destination will undoubtedly be an important steppingstone to redefining tourism in the region and beyond,” Pagano explained.
AMAALA is a core component of the Vision 2030 strategy to diversify the Saudi economy, by enabling rapid growth in the tourism sector. Once complete in 2027, it will offer approximately 3,000 hotel rooms across 25 hotels, as well as high-end retail establishments, fine dining, wellness, and recreational facilities.
The project is expected to create upwards of 50,000 new direct, indirect, and induced jobs for Saudis, as well as contribute upwards of $2.93bn to the country’s GDP once the project is fully operational.
“Our progress across infrastructure, groundworks, and key assets is testament to our unwavering ambition to champion tourism as a powerful force for good, remaining closely aligned with the goals of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and Saudi Green Initiative. We are trailblazing regeneration at an unprecedented scale to create better conditions of life across the destination ethos, while catering to global demand for inclusive, non-extractive, and equitable experiences,” concluded Pagano.
In an exclusive to Middle East Construction News (MECN), Ian Williamson, Group Chief Projects Delivery Officer at TRSDC reflected on the project’s achievements over the past five years.