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Saudi Arabia building desert pop-up city for 2 million

King Abdullah Economic City could help Saudi Arabia expand its economy beyond oil. (KAEC)

King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) may be the ultimate “pop-up” metropolis. Euan McLelland reports for the Daily Mail that this massive desert city being built entirely from scratch could house 2 million people by 2035. The planned city in Saudi Arabia is named for a monarch who passed away in January.

The £67 billion (US$104 billion) “super-city” would cover 70 square miles (180 square kilometers) of barren terrain. Under construction for a decade, it is about 15 percent complete, the article says. The new city is expected to welcome its first 50,000 inhabitants by 2020.

Located on the Red Sea an hour north of Jeddah, the nation’s main commercial hub, the Economic City would feature a major port, industrial zone and island-based financial center. The project is designed to help the nation transition away from an oil-based economy as supplies and demand recede. It is being financed privately with Saudi government oversight. 

Daily Mail

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