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‘Riyadh is ready’: Saudi Arabia reveals glimpse of proposed Expo 2030 site

‘Riyadh is ready’: Saudi Arabia reveals glimpse of proposed Expo 2030 site

Saudi Arabia unveiled a first look at the proposed Riyadh Expo 2030 site earlier this week, months ahead of the Kingdom finding out if it has secured the winning bid to host the world fair.

The Kingdom has set its sights on hosting the World Expo in Riyadh from October 1, 2030, to March 31, 2031, centered around the theme “The Era of Change: Together for a Foresighted Tomorrow.”

If successful, Saudi Arabia’s proposed site will cover about seven square kilometers and feature a “Loop of the World” avenue connecting pavilions from more than 220 countries.

In a new promotional video on Twitter, entitled ‘Riyadh is ready’, Saudi Arabia revealed a first look at what visitors to Expo 2030 can expect.

The 39-second clip showed a city-wide view of Riyadh, reflecting Saudi Arabia’s transformational journey to its modern-day metropolis. It also sheds light on Saudi Arabia’s focus on sustainability, which will be a key theme of Expo 2030, if the Kingdom secures the winning bid.

The video said Saudi Arabia will be the “most connected Expo ever,” with airline partner Riyadh Air connecting visitors from across the globe to the Kingdom, with visitors being able to get from “airport to site” within five minutes.

‘Riyadh is ready today,” it said.

The Riyadh Expo 2030 will be held near King Salman International Airport, which is currently being developed, making it easily accessible for visitors arriving in the city.

Visitors can reach the exhibition site within minutes using the Riyadh Metro network, which runs through all parts of Riyadh city and connects to one of the three exhibition entrances and the modern road network.

The host of Expo 2030 will be decided in November. Also competing to host the event are Busan, South Korea, Rome and Odessa in Ukraine.

Under the theme “Together for a Foresighted Tomorrow,” the Kingdom last month unveiled its master plan for the world fair during an official reception in Paris held in the presence of 179 member states of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE).

The blueprints for the event are in line with the country’s commitment to achieving carbon neutrality and following international standards of sustainability, including urban afforestation, the use of treated water, and the provision of new energy sources.

“Our goal in the Kingdom is to organize the first environmentally friendly exhibition that achieves a zero level of carbon emissions,” Expo blueprint team member Eng. Nouf Bint Majid al-Muneef said at the time.

“The Riyadh Expo 2030 site will be powered by clean resources that rely on solar energy, and we are developing high standards for resource efficiencies and detailed strate-gies to enhance biodiversity, eliminate food waste, and ensure green waste management and recycling.”

The exhibition’s design reflects the ancient urban style, history, culture, and the nature of Riyadh city, according to the blueprint members.

It also showcases Saudi Arabia’s shared concern with the rest of the world for the climate and its ambition to foresee a future full of potential.

With about 226 pavilions, countries will be placed side by side, symbolizing the Kingdom’s important role in facilitating global cooperation.

This will also facilitate visitors’ journey and ensure easy movement between pavilions, public squares, cultural and innovation facilities, food services, rest, and waiting areas in a smooth and flexible manner while covering very short distances.

“The blueprint will work on developing a version of the Expo that is the most flexible when it comes to visitors’ movement within the site; and the most interactive, collaborative, and sustainable ever. We will make sure to provide an exceptional experience for the exhibition’s visitors,” Lamia bint Abdulaziz, a member of the blueprint team for the Riyadh Expo 2030, told BIE members.

“We will also work on enabling full and balanced participation, with added value for all participating countries, and we will provide unprecedented experience of high quality for more than 40 million visitors,” she added.

Moreover, visitors to the exhibition can stroll through fully shaded corridors with designs inspired by Riyadh’s architectural heritage.

Riyadh Expo 2030 will also feature a modern green oasis within one of the tributaries of Wadi As-Sulai, which will pass through the exhibition site.

A landmark will be constructed at the heart of Riyadh Expo 2030, built on 195 columns representing the countries participating in the exhibition.

Three pavilions, each representing the exhibition’s sub-themes of “Prosperity for All,” “Climate Action,” and “A Different Tomorrow,” will surround the landmark.

The exhibition will also feature the Collaborative Change Corner (C3), an area that will drive innovation and creativity during the seven-year journey leading up to and beyond Riyadh Expo 2030.

The C3 aims to showcase how collaboration among the brightest minds in scientific, social, and intellectual innovations can accelerate the changes that will shape our future.

With additional reporting by Tamara Abueish, Al Arabiya English

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