Will Saudi Arabia abandon (or vastly scale back) the NEOM linear city project by 2028?

Abandoned in this case will mean:

  • Explicitly cancelled

  • Shelved indefinitely (like Jeddah Tower) with no measurable progress in design or construction

  • Scaled back to something vastly more modest (at my disgression)

I will try to judge these criteria as objectively as possible, I do have the personal opinion the project is unrealistic though.

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I doubt an abandoned project would be touting their progress:

Going from 170kms to 2.4kms seems like it very very very easily meets the criteria of "scaled back to something vastly more modest".

I think this can resolve YES

@Tripping They haven’t said they won’t do the 170km though. As per the Bloomberg article they’ll continue working towards that in stages. What’s happened here is a delay not a downsize.

@costlySignal well there are conflicting reports. First there was an article saying it's being cut back. Then an article saying the same but "by 2030" and not ruling out more work after that.

If the initial report quoted below was correct, it would be enough for resolution. Problem is the source was anonymous and so there isn't official confirmation.

Sounds to me like it probably has been cut back, but not publicly admitted yet.

Saudis Scale Back Ambition for $1.5 Trillion Desert Project Neom - Bloomberg
By 2030, the government at one point hoped to have 1.5 million residents living in The Line, a sprawling, futuristic city it plans to contain within a pair of mirror-clad skyscrapers. Now, officials expect the development will house fewer than 300,000 residents by that time, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Officials have long said The Line would be built in stages and they expect it to ultimately cover a 170-kilometer stretch of desert along the coast. With the latest pullback, though, officials expect to have just 2.4 kilometers of the project completed by 2030, the person familiar with the matter said, who asked not to be named discussing non-public information.

at my disgression

Someone’s paying someone to make this market.

Ha-ha. The original author of this market is now "Deleted account"

I was going to ask a question to the author: "what are the rules for the early resolution — are you going to resolve this market early or you are planning to resolve it in 2029 no matter what?"

bought Ṁ250 YES


Saudi cuts back NEOM desert city plans by 98.6 percent

[...] an unnamed official told Bloomberg on 5 April that the project would be scaled back to 2.4 kilometers, with a reduced capacity of less than 300,000 residents.

bought Ṁ100 YES

@figo That sounds more like a delay to me, rather than scaling back the plan.

@figo Seems like a huge scale-back to me

predicts YES

The word you were looking for is "discretion" (same root as "discreet" here).

predicts NO

Would help to have some guidance on the magnitude that would count as "vastly". I expect they will go slow, but could still be on track to complete the full project in many decades.

bought Ṁ50 NO from 70% to 69%
predicts NO

Mentioned by @RobinHanson in Why The Line

bought Ṁ50 NO from 69% to 67%