Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has announced a project to ‘Revitalize Historic Jeddah’ as part of plans to redevelop the area into a business, cultural, and entrepreneurial hub.
The historic Jeddah area, known locally as al-Balad (the town), is located on the eastern bank of the Red Sea and was developed as an important port for Indian Ocean trade routes, moving products from Jeddah to the holy city of Mecca, beginning in the 7th century.
“The new project comes within the Crown Prince’s keenness and interest in preserving, conserving and rehabilitating historical sites, in order to achieve the objectives of Vision 2030 and to reflect the Arab and Islamic depth of the Kingdom as one of the most important pillars of the vision,” read a statement on the Crown Prince’s announcement.
The Historic Jeddah area contains more than 600 heritage buildings
The Historic Jeddah area contains more than 600 heritage buildings, 36 historical mosques, five major historical markets, ancient corridors and squares, and sites with important historical significance, such as the old waterfront, a major route for pilgrims.
Work on the project will last 15 years
According to the Crown Prince’s announcement, work on the project will last 15 years. During that time, the Historic Jeddah area will be developed along multiple tracks, including infrastructure and services, natural and environmental development, improving quality of life, and urban aspects, with the goal of making it “an inspiring site in the region and a global front for the Kingdom through investment.”
The project aims to create an integrated environment with multiple natural components in Historic Jeddah, including 5 kilometres of developed waterfronts, green spaces, and open gardens that cover 15% of the total area of the al-Balad area, which take in a 2.5-square-kilometer project area.