RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s realty sector is expected to witness large-scale property development and a transformation in civic infrastructure thanks to the rise in capital investment and enterprising government policies, according to delegates at the Cityscape Global Exhibition.
The event, held in the capital city from Sept. 11-13, announced many significant projects, including residential, commercial or mixed-use developments that will change the Saudi skyline. It also featured plans slated to contribute to the upkeep and aesthetics of the cities, making it more appealing to tenants and residents.
In a bid to enhance urban planning guidelines and design standards in Saudi Arabia, the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs and Housing has inked an agreement with Saudi Downtown Co. to develop the architectural design standards in 12 cities.
The memorandum of understanding, signed on the second day of the exhibition, aims to collaborate in establishing planning requirements, urban planning rules, and specific plans for projects in the wholly owned subsidiary of the Public Investment Fund.
It also aims to improve planning and design standards for urban components such as parks, public squares, parking spaces, and all aspects of urban living quality.
The company will have environmentally friendly urban hubs in cities such as Madinah, Al-Ahsa, Alkhobar, Buraydah, Taif and Arar.
It will also change the architectural landscape in Hail, Tabuk, Dumah Al-Jandal, Jizan, Najran and Al-Baha.
The ministry also collaborated with the UN Development Programme and the UN Human Settlements Programme to improve spatial planning and urban landscapes in Saudi cities.
The agreement, signed by Municipal Minister Majid Al-Hogail and UNDP Resident Representative Nahed Hussein, seeks to leverage international expertise in transforming spatial planning and urban landscapes.
According to the deal, the program also includes a package of initiatives aimed at promoting sustainability, enhancing residents’ quality of life and raising living standards, reported the Saudi Press Agency.
On the investment front, Saudi Arabia’s Real Estate Development Fund has inked an agreement with the nonprofit organization Sakan Development Housing Foundation to generate SR12.1 billion ($3.23 billion) in financing solutions, according to SPA.
The agreement is part of a larger framework of encouraging collaboration and allowing the nonprofit sector to contribute to empowering Saudi households based on their needs and financial capacities to attain the housing program’s objectives.
This housing scheme is part of the Saudi Vision 2030 plan, which intends to provide sustainable housing and financial alternatives.
REDF CEO Mansour bin Madi explained that this agreement extends their strategic partnership with active entities and sectors to empower beneficiaries with financing solutions and benefits.
Umm Al-Qura for Development and Construction, the owner and developer of the upcoming “Masar” destination in Makkah, signed a partnership agreement with the International Hospitality Group to develop and operate the Swiss Inn Hotel, a five-star category hotel for SR800 million.
The 450-unit hotel will feature international restaurants and upscale amenities in line with hotel standards to meet the expectations of the elite residents of Makkah and its visitors, providing the highest levels of comfort and luxury.
Furthermore, the National Housing Company recorded reservations for approximately 1,700 suburban and community units constructed in collaboration with developers, with a total value exceeding SR1.5 billion.
NHC aims to boost real estate supply in the Kingdom through a variety of housing options, in line with Vision 2030’s housing program, which intends to increase Saudi household homeownership to 70 percent.
It is actively working on outing its plans and strategies into action to accelerate residents’ ownership of their first houses by providing modern housing options that contribute to the Kingdom’s real estate sector expansion.
According to its website, the Cityscape Global Exhibition is the largest global event dedicated to showcasing advancements in the real estate industry, addressing its issues, and unveiling the most significant and innovative projects.
It has been organized by the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs and Housing under the theme “The Future of Living.”
This year’s edition features the NEOM Future Housing Summit, the Real Estate Investors Forum, the Design and Architecture Theater, the Real Estate Technology Theater, and the Cityscape Global Innovation Challenge, which fosters innovation from startups in the sector.