Riyadh, Apr 8 (IANS): Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has launched a masterplan to develop the historical city of AlUla in the Kingdom's Medina region.
The project, titled "The Journey Through Time", aims to create 38,000 new jobs and contribute 120 billion Saudi Riyals ($32 billion) to the Kingdom's GDP, Xinhua news agency reported.
The plan represents a key milestone in the transformation of AlUla into a global destination
for heritage, culture, and nature, and contributes to the advancement of Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030.
The masterplan is the first phase of a wider development strategy for AlUla, which is being overseen by the Royal Commission for AlUla.
As part of the masterplan, five districts spanning the 20 km heart of AlUla will serve as waypoints on the "Journey Through Time".
Museums, galleries, and cultural centres will be part of the masterplan, serving as landmarks across each district.
There will be up to 10-million-square-metres green and open spaces, 80 per cent of AlUla is also being designated as nature reserves with key flora and fauna reintroduced, as well as the conservation of wild animals.
AlUla, the ancient walled city founded in the 6th century B.C., is historically located on the incense route, the network of routes that facilitated the trading of spices, silk and other luxury items through Arabia, Egypt and India.
It is packed with mud-brick and stone houses.