Aecom wins project management contract for Saudi Arabia’s futuristic Neom

US-headquartered global infrastructure firm Aecom has been awarded a multi-year contract to provide project management consultancy services for Phase 1 of Neom Bay, part of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s plans for "Neom", a $500bn high-tech economic zone to be built from scratch in the country’s north west on the coasts of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aqaba.

Neom Bay Phase 1 is intended as the first showcase of the Neom vision, comprising several thousand residential units, leisure, retail, commercial, public and entertainment facilities, Aecom said today.

It will provide project management, contract administration, technical and environmental support services, and site supervision over the design and construction phases of the project, located at a 45 sq km area at Neom Bay.

First announced in 2017 as part of bin Salman’s "Vision 2030" plan to attract investment and diversify the Saudi economy away from oil, the scheme was envisaged as a 26,500 sq km haven for futuristic business sectors that stretched into Egyptian and Jordanian territory. The name "Neom" is derived from the shortening of the Arabic term for "new future".

It fell into controversy in October last year following the murder of Saudi dissident journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, when a number of high-profile figures, including the architect Norman Foster, suspended their involvement in the Neom advisory board.

"We are delighted that Neom has chosen Aecom to drive the delivery of this significant project," said Ian Laski, president and CEO, Aecom Arabia, adding Aecom had begun mobilising local and global resources for the project.

On Sunday, 30 June the first flight took off from the new Neom Bay Airport, built to serve the Neom zone. Saudi Arabian Airlines said it will operate two flights a week from Neom to Riyadh. 

Image: Outline of the Neom zone territory on the coasts of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aqaba (

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