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Changing Urban Landscape in Riyadh
May 15, 2019
by Lorenzo Meloni
Decreasing dependence on hydrocarbons has been a main priority in Saudi Arabia for decades, gaining new impetus through the plan Saudi Vision 2030 led by Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman. By 2030, the country plans to diversify the economy and develop public service sectors such as health, education, recreation and infrastructure. Today, the oil and gas sector accounts for about 50% of Saudi Arabia’s GDP and 70% of its export earnings. The plan, however, has been shadowed by controversy as Saudi Arabia faces increasing international condemnation for human rights violations. Against this backdrop, the city of Riyadh has seen unprecedented modernization efforts to attract foreign investment, including the construction of dozens of skyscrapers and a new subway.

Magnum Photographer Lorenzo Meloni documented this rapidly changing urban landscape.