Saudi Arabian Airlines has announced plans to develop a green technology park at King Abdullah Economic City, north of Jeddah.
The ambitious project will be located on a 10,000 square metre plot of land in the economic city’s industrial valley, with onsite research, development and data centres to serve the airline and other tenants at the forthcoming business hub.
“We want to pioneer a green technology park to act as the nucleolus of technology innovation, research and development for Saudi Arabian Airlines, as well as other companies in the economic city and wider region as a whole,” said Muhammed Ali Albakri, vice president of information technology at Saudi Arabian Airlines.
“Upon completion in 2014, there’s an excellent chance that our park will become the first facility that offers technology services to other tenants at King Abdullah Economic City. Data centre solutions, such as co-location, hosting services and even complete infrastructure outsourcing could easily be provided to interested parties.”
In addition, a 15,000 square metre office complex is being opened in the economic city’s business zone, which will become the headquarters for Saudi Arabian Airlines’ entire IT division and consolidate the airline’s various call centres; with four existing call centres being brought together under one roof.
“We expect to takeover the new headquarters by the third quarter of 2012, after which we will continue to finish the internal design and fittings,” stated Albakri, adding that various housing options have been earmarked for the estimated 1800 employee families that will be relocated once the building is operational.
“We are working with the economic city’s management to arrange a large spectrum of housing options for employees, including a homeownership programme. Most employees will be housed in a specific area developed for Saudia, although options will be available to rent or own properties in any of the city’s residential zones. The final details will be locked-in during the first quarter of 2012.”