The Business Year

The Riyadh Metro will not only revolutionize life in the Saudi capital; as one of the largest infrastructure projects in the world, it will place it among the world's most transportation-innovative cities.

Yago Mijangos

Project Director, Fast Metro Consortium

Leading this consortium, we, at Bechtel, have a 70-year history in the country and have worked on many of the nation’s major infrastructure projects. The Riyadh Metro project truly is the pinnacle of our experience and participation. The metro is one of the largest infrastructure projects currently being built in the world. The significance of the transformation here in Riyadh will be substantial. The residents of Riyadh will no doubt benefit the most. The city is a sophisticated intersection of government institutions, iconic high-rise developments, diverse economic and business infrastructure, and a sprawling residential base. The metro will represent a way of bringing all these facets together and connecting them from a mobility standpoint. This project will weave together the city’s many parts so that every aspect and sector of Riyadh can benefit. It will also boost the country’s image. It will be a visible 21st century transportation link that is an international symbol of movement and development. For those within the country, it offers a huge opportunity in terms of efficiency and access. It will be incumbent on the youth of Saudi Arabia to take advantage of this mobility and the efficiencies gained from easier access to governmental and academic institutions and economic opportunity. The Riyadh Metro Project will take key components of 21st century global infrastructure and interconnect them all. Each of the three packages that make up the Riyadh Metro are in themselves megaprojects with immense challenges from a technical and logistical point of view. They are so complex that the only way to approach them is through a consortium. The need to have supply-train system, local knowledge, and global technology each necessitate a consortium structure. Bechtel’s fundamental business is bringing together competency and knowledge from around the globe to take on some of the largest engineering and construction projects in the world.

Marco Faggiani

Project Manager, ArRiyadh New Mobility (ANM) Consortium

When the project starts operating in 2019, it will be revolutionary. This is more than just about transportation; it can change the whole behavior of the city. It will impact real estate, giving more value to the land surrounding stations. It changes neighborhoods, enhances social life, and changes the look and feel of the city overall. This is even more the case for Riyadh, because we are starting from scratch. In terms of the advantages and changes it will bring to Riyadh, it will also reduce pollution and is more efficient in terms of energy consumption. It will reduce traffic congestion, and when we add the mass bus-transit system as well, there will be a major change in Riyadh. As for challenges, we have experienced and skilled teams familiar with these kinds of jobs, so they have been able to deal with problems without major disruptions. The main problems are dealing with utilities and interfacing with stakeholders. We must also avoid disrupting traffic, which is difficult, and not disrupt water, electricity, sewage, or communication lines. We have to leave the utilities untouched while working at maximum efficiency—that is challenging.

Walker Kimball

Project Director, Walker Kimball

This is definitely one of the most important projects of this kind in the whole world. Despite the initial challenge and huge resources required, it will be a success because it is driven by a clear vision. I am from Salini Impregilo, and we specialize in managing and delivering large-scale complex infrastructure projects such as this one. We have considerable experience in projects of this kind that require not only skills and expertise but also a vision. When vision and planning are well done, the goals were always met. Another example of this is the expansion of the Panama Canal, which we were also involved in. It is common opinion that the Riyadh Metro will positively impact this city, bring better services, and make Riyadh one of the most advanced cities in the world. It will be a breakthrough for citizens and businesses in general. This metro will contribute to the achievement of the Saudi Vision 2030 goals through the promotion of metropolitan economic infrastructure. It will provide rapid and economic public transportation services by easing traffic congestion and reducing pollution by cutting the number of vehicles on city roads.



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