Plans unveiled for zero-carbon smart city in Riyadh

ICT and internet of things technologies will be integrated into Alnama Smart City’s infrastructure to create an intelligent and collaborative ecosystem.

A zero-carbon smart city for 44,000 residents is being planned for Riyadh in Saudi Arabia.

Alnama Smart City will aim to promote sustainable living in a 10 square kilometre community with various hubs including residential, educational, commercial, tourism and medical ones.

Circular economy

Derived from the Arabic word “thrive”, the city will provide 11,000 residential units and create 10,000 jobs in various sectors including green-tech industries to create a green circular economy for the city. It will be powered by 100 per cent renewable energy, water recycling and waste recycling.

The project is masterminded by URB, which is headquartered in the Dubai Design District and has several “mega-scale” smart cities in planning stages. It claims the city will provide the highest standards of social, environmental and economic sustainability. Various hubs will be designed to transform the city into a unique destination as well as an attraction for ecotourists and medical tourists.

The green-tech hub will provide an ecosystem for urban-tech companies related to food, energy, water, waste, mobility and building materials.

ICT and internet of things technologies will be integrated into the city’s hard and soft infrastructures to create an intelligent and collaborative ecosystem. Electric vehicle charging stations, self-driving cars and solar farms will also be integrated to increase connectivity, sustainability and livability.

Alnama will import and export renewable energy through a two-way grid system to help creating a green economy for the city, while smart water systems will reduce water consumption.

Baharash Bagherian, Urb CEO, who has been behind a number of sustainable cities including recently launched projects such as The Sustainable City in Yiti, The Sustainable City Yas Island, Nexgen Sustainable City, described Alnama as the “next evolution” in smart cities.

“Alnama aims to be the next generation of self-sufficient city, producing all the city’s renewable energy needs, as well as the resident’s caloric food intake on site,” he said. “Biosaline agriculture, productive gardens, wadis and carbon-rich habitats are key features of the development’s innovative and resilient landscape design.

“The city was planned through the design of its landscape, rather than its buildings. This creates an urbanism that is more socially inclusive, more economically valuable, and more sensitive to the environment.”

A hospitality hub will feature eco-friendly glamping lodges, eco resorts as well as a nature conservation centre, which will promote ecotourism. An autism village, wellness centre and clinics within the medical hub will promote medical tourism.

Urb said that ultimately the city will become a work, live and visit destination and it seeks to set a new benchmark for all future cities as well as promote greener economies that centre around food, water, energy and waste.




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