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Saudi Arabia Embarks on a Massive $2.7bn Stadium Renovation and Construction Effort

February 1 2024

Saudi Arabia has initiated an ambitious sports infrastructure overhaul and expansion, investing 10.1 billion Saudi Riyals ($2.69 billion USD) to enhance its standing as a global sports destination in preparation for hosting the 2027 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup.

Major Stadium Projects Underway
The Ministry of Sports has completed the prequalification process and is set to issue tenders for the construction and upgrade of several stadiums across the Kingdom. These projects include:

- King Fahd Stadium, Riyadh: Capacity will be increased to 92,000 seats.
- Prince Faisal bin Fahd Stadium, Riyadh: Seating capacity will be expanded to 45,000.
- Prince Mohammed bin Fahd Stadium: Capacity will be boosted to 30,000 seats.
- Prince Saud bin Jalawi Stadium, Al Khair: Seating capacity will be increased to 45,000.
- New Riyadh Stadium: A sustainable stadium with 45,000 seats will be constructed in the north of Riyadh.

These upgrades and new constructions aim to not only accommodate more fans but to elevate the sports viewing experience to international standards.

Training Facilities to Support Elite Competition
In addition to the stadium improvements, the plan includes the creation of 30 new training grounds and facilities in proximity to the competition stadiums, ensuring teams have access to world-class preparation venues.

Rapid Progress and Deadlines
Construction is expected to commence in July 2024, with a rigorous timeline set to ensure completion by December 2025. This timeline aligns with the Kingdom's commitment to have 18 facilities ready for the 2026 AFC Women's Cup.

Other Notable Stadium Developments
- Jeddah Central Stadium: Contract awarded to China Railway Construction Corporation, with work starting in February and expected completion by 2026.
- Dammam Sports City Stadium: Contractors submitted bids for a new 40,000-seat stadium, with construction expected to fast-track for a mid-2026 completion.
- King Abdullah Sports City Stadium: Public Investment Fund (PIF) seeks project and asset management services for the operation and upgrade.
- Qiddiya Entertainment City Stadium: Tender issued for the main construction contract, with bids submitted in December.
- PIF's Neom Giga project: Plans for an innovative stadium suspended 300 meters above ground featured in marketing campaigns.

Saudi Arabia is swiftly progressing towards its goal of becoming a global sports hub, with these extensive infrastructure projects demonstrating the Kingdom's readiness to host major international tournaments, including the 2034 Fifa World Cup.

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