The Line: Innovation or Claustrophobic?


On January 10, 2021, the Saudi Arabian Prince, Moḥammad bin Salman, announced that there will be a linear city under construction. The 170 kilometer city is going to be a part of the Saudi Vision 2030 project. As climate change continues to advance, many countries are trying to transition from carbon based to alternatives. Saudi Arabia created a project called, NEOM, which is what “The Line,” a futuristic city in the middle of the desert, is a part of. It is said that the building will house nine million residents. 

The building is composed of a mirrored, wall like, structure. It will be two- hundred meters wide, and five hundred meters tall. The length of this structure is a hundred seventy kilometers long. As this project takes place, it is said that it will set a new benchmark for sustainable development. The project will consist of an airport, shipping port, industrial areas, research center, sports and entertainment venues, and tourism destination. The cost of residency is around fifty-five thousand dollars per person. 

The Line aims for a zero emissions living. The energy within comes from renewable sources. Wastewater would be recycled and cars would not be used. The developers are encouraging people to cycle, walk, or use public transportation. According to the website, its concept claims that no one would be more than two minutes away from nature. “No roads, cars or emissions, it will run on 100% renewable energy and 95% of land will be preserved for nature” (

A concern that people have expressed are the claustrophobic lifestyle residents will be living in. The Line is basically a long building, stretched across a desert. Meaning there will be multiple layers to this structure. Will people get sick of living in a claustrophobic manner? However in theory, this structure is about a hundred twenty five story skyscrapers. Maybe the residents will have a good amount of living space. “The modules are designed to house up to 80,000 people in close proximity to work, leisure, education, and health services, enabling everyone to attain a good work/life balance” (

There are other concerns about this cramped city- government, individual rights, diverse religion, and spiritual beliefs. However, the only answers we have from the inventors are that this is built around humans, not technology. This project will be completed by 2025. Until then, would you want to live in The Line?