Virgin Hyperloop One to connect Saudi's megaprojects including Neom and The Red Sea Project
Virgin Hyperloop One is likely to reveal details of its plan to link Saudi Arabia's Neom, The Red Sea Project, and Qiddiya gigaprojects together, and support the kingdom's Vision 2030 economic diversification plan, at The Big 5 Saudi show next week.
According to Construction Week, the company’s vice president for the Arabian Gulf, Colin Rhys, will speak at exhibition that is to be held on 10-13 March at Jeddah Centre for Forums amd Events.
At the show, Rhys is expected to explain how hyperloop technology can support Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 strategy, according to a statement released by the organisers of The Big 5 Saudi.
A graphic published alongside details of Rhys's speech depicts a GCC alignment route, showcasing stops at Neom, The Red Sea Project, Jeddah, Makkah, Riyadh, Kuwait City, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Muscat.
Hyperloop technology could cut the time it takes to travel from Riyadh to Jeddah to 46 minutes and, ahead of his talk, Rhys said the infrastructure scheme will encourage Saudi's adoption of emerging technologies.
“[Virgin] Hyperloop One is consistent with the bold transformative ambitions of Vision 2030 and can act as a high-tech catalyst through its requirements for software, artificial intelligence, and computer-based operating systems,” he said.
Rhys added that hyperloop will create a “manufacturing hub” in the kingdom, allowing the country to import and export goods at rapid speeds.
Passengers will also be able to use the network to travel in pod-shaped vehicles from Riyadh to the kingdom’s $500bn (SAR1.9tn) Neom gigaproject in 58 minutes.
The system is expected to create high-tech jobs for Saudi nationals and provide an uplift in gross domestic product. To ensure young Saudis benefit from Virgin Hyperloop One’s expertise, the company partnered with The Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Foundation (Misk) last year to provide 21 internships at its campus in Los Angeles, US.
Three of the Saudi interns now have full-time jobs with Virgin Hyperloop One.