Tunnel excavation for Line 3 of the Riyadh Metro – the longest line of the six being created – has been completed.
The project was commissioned by the ArRiyadh Development Authority (ADA) and has been built by Italian contractor Salini Impregilo.
Line 3 is also known as the Orange Line and is more than 40km long, of which 11km will be underground. It is a mixture of bored and cut and cover tunnel. Once complete, the line will have 22 stations.
Salini Impregilo leads the ArRiyadh New Mobility (ANM) consortium, one of three involved in the $23bn (£18.5bn) six-line Riyadh Metro project, Saudi Arabia’s first underground railway systems. The network will cover 176km when finished. Tunnelling on the Green Line was completed in June 2016 and work has also started on other lines.
The metro is expected to reduce traffic congestion and air pollution in a city whose population is forecast to rise from 6.5M today to 8.3M by 2030.
The Downtown Station, located near the Riyadh governor’s palace in the city centre, will be one of the iconic stations along the route, with two underground metro lines passing through it. It will cover 20,000m2 and has been designed by the Norwegian architectural firm Snøhetta together with One Works and Crew. Its entrance will be covered by an inverted stainless steel cone to provide shade for passengers and channel sunlight down to the platforms.