Architect explains why the LINE is a massive failure

Shahnaseeb Babar
5 min readSep 3, 2022

The new venture of Saudi Monarchy does not makes sense outside of big screens and animation.

Image taken from www.neom.com

So, you’ve probably heard or seen it by now.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is on a mission and instead of focusing on gentrification, green spaces, walkable and bicycle-friendly cities, it wants to do something big and change the centuries-old practice of how cities are generally planned.

You see, the problem is not how tall the city [read: LINE] is, or how fancy it looks but the problem is everything that it is aiming to do!!!

Sure, all those big renders and images, which undoubtedly are amazing, look superb on animation and big screen but when you start to implement those ideas, it is not just a nightmare for architects, urbanists, developers, engineers, and every other stakeholder but it is just a total disaster.

Now if you’re like me, who is subscribed to almost every other architect and urbanist on YouTube, you might be seeing it is getting just way too much heat which is something it actually deserves.

For some god-awful reason, there is some weird fantasy of dictators building BIG!

You see this with UAE, you see this with Qatar, you see this with almost every other rich gulf state, and you’re also seeing this with the new capital of Egypt and Myanmar.

Such cities are soulless.

They seem to be out-of-place and just do not fit with the context that they’re being built around.

Heck, Hitler had a BIGGER version of Berlin which was filled with just Domes and Domes. Gladly, that didn’t happen.

Anyways, the point is, that dictators love building big stuff and the LINE is just a futuristically evolved version of it.

Which like others mentioned above will not serve the people but only the rich and the friends of the rich.

The LINE is the same thing but on “steroids.”

It is a disaster of epic proportions, and let me tell you why:

Number 1: How will the light enter?

Sure, if you’re ultra-rich, you get to live on the top floor but the question is…

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Shahnaseeb Babar

Helping web 3 projects blast off to the moon! 🚀 Developer, Certified SEO Specialist & Copywriter. 3x Quora, 1x Medium Top Writer and Upwork Top Rated.