Ian Williamson, Group Chief Projects Delivery Officer at The Red Sea Development Company reflects on the project’s numerous achievements over the past five years
As we celebrate the milestone of five years since the announcement of The Red Sea Project, it provides us with a moment to reflect on how far we have come in taking this development from a vision into a real destination, ready to welcome guests early next year.
Being one of the first people to work on the project, it gives me immense pride to see the progress we have made. At the beginning, we were only a small group of colleagues figuring out the first steps to take on our amazing journey towards delivering one of the most ambitious regenerative tourism destinations in the world.
Our aim then, which remains to this day, was to set new standards in sustainable development, respecting the natural world, creating opportunities for the local communities and protecting and enhancing the destination for the future.
We’ve appointed some of the world’s greatest consultants to imagine and design thousands of assets and we’ve engaged several hundred contractors, including many here in the Kingdom, to construct and deliver on the vision. We have achieved milestone after milestone despite a global pandemic, setting new environmental, health & safety and construction standards for Saudi Arabia, and we are on track to deliver our first hotel assets early next year.
For me personally, it really is a culmination of my 40-year career in not only leading the delivery of this world-renowned project, but contributing to the rebirth of a great nation.
With a vision to pave the way for an incredible transformation in Saudi Arabia and beyond, TRSDC has already proven to be a significant contributor to diversifying the Saudi economy. Through destinations like The Red Sea Project and AMAALA, we are embarking on an exciting journey to spotlight the Red Sea coast as a platform for the regeneration, revival, and resurgence of the Kingdom’s rich natural and cultural heritage. We are developing the nation’s luxury tourism sector, bringing opportunities to the people of Saudi Arabia, and opening an undiscovered destination for the world to experience a deeper understanding and appreciation of this country.
TRSDC has also been a catalyst for social development and diversified growth, investing in enabling knowledge transfer, enhancing professional development opportunities, and developing local talent. And now, after years of planning and preparing, we are only a few months away from welcoming the first guests to our destination.
Developments like The Red Sea Project are primed to become global references for eco-tourism, development, conservation, and regenerative sustainability.
Today, that small team has become a large and mighty one, acting as agents of change to demonstrate to the world that creating world-class destinations can go hand-in-hand with protecting and enhancing the environment.
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