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Welcome to TILAL LIFE


As part of Tilal’s vision to build inspiring communities and fulfilling lives, we are proud to launch Tilal Life — a publication that brings you leadership and expert insight on human-centric community design, architecture, technology and more. Enjoy our first issue where we explore how better communities contribute to greater quality-of-life.

Journey to Sustainable Cities

To elevate the human experience

Have you ever thought about the things that impact your daily life? Is it your professional life, or perhaps your family? What about the place you chose to live in? The environment that surrounds us plays a vital role in determining the overall quality of our lives. While many of us may think of work and family as influential factors, the place we live in is a key and impactful element in our daily lives.

So, what do we mean by sustainable urban development? It is a journey toward development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to fulfill those needs. Like our previous generations that prioritized building good infrastructure for sanitation and extending electrical power, turning yesterday’s necessities into today’s essentials. Through this, we seek to achieve a balance between the economy, the environment, and society, building sustainable cities that enhance the human experience.

The benefits of sustainability are evident not only in long-term economic aspects but also extend to a significant environmental impact, such as reducing air pollution, waste, and pressure on natural resources, water, and energy. The essence of investing in sustainable initiatives lies in their impact on the identity of cities. Our investment in solar energy, for example, may serve to protect the environment and save energy and money.

Planning for Sustainable Cities

Imagine a whole day free from traffic congestion, where your morning begins with a walk, followed by a bike ride to work. In the evening, you return using public transportation, enjoying green spaces along the way, basking in their shade, and breathing clean air with mild temperatures in the midsummer. Can you envision how this could positively impact your lifestyle, health, and social life?
Here, the focus is on sustainable urban planning based on four fundamental principles:

Green Transportation as a cornerstone of sustainable planning, considering any mode of transportation with minimal environmental impact. Strategies to support green transportation include:

  • Encouraging walking and providing infrastructure like sidewalks and pedestrian bridges.

  • Establishing bike lanes and promoting the use of eco-friendly transportation alternatives.

  • Enhancing and developing public transportation.

  • Implementing traffic regulations for these modes of transportation.

Energy Self-Sufficiency, playing a significant role in the environmental and economic sustainability of cities.
This involves:

  • Finding alternative energy sources such as solar or wind energy.

  • Implementing solutions and technologies for alternative energy use, with real-life examples discussed in this issue.

Supporting the construction of green buildings and encouraging vertical farming:

  • Helps reduce temperatures, minimize pollution, and improve the quality of life for residents.

  • Assists in better water management.

Providing extensive green spaces like parks and reserves in the city center, which:

  • Improves the overall climate of the city.

  • Offers environmentally friendly investment solutions.

  • Encourages recreational activities in public and open spaces.
As mentioned, the success of the sustainability journey lies in promoting a healthy and active lifestyle based on continuous access to clean and environmentally friendly energy, supporting the quality of life for residents. We will explore some examples illustrating their impact.

In your opinion, which of these principles has the greatest impact?

Sustainable Strategies for Urban Development

We will discuss some strategies that have been implemented in the pursuit of achieving sustainability in our communities.

Green Cities

In the journey toward sustainable cities, we must focus on key aspects, starting with green infrastructure. This involves enhancing urban life through the presence of green roofs, permeable surfaces, and city gardens. These aim to improve air quality and reduce stormwater flow, creating an urban environment that breathes green. In line with this, a project has been introduced:

Saudi Green Initiative

This initiative aims to achieve sustainability goals in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

One of the key strategies of the Saudi Green Initiative is to achieve net-zero emissions by the year 2060.


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Reducing Emissions

Ambitious initiatives focusing on the energy transition, including emissions reduction across sectors and boosting renewable energy capacity.


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Greening Saudi

Saudi Arabia's promise to turn the desert green and rehabilitate 40 million hectares of land over the coming decades.

Protecting Land and Sea

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Protecting Land and Sea

Commitments to increase protected areas, bolster biodiversity and safeguard the Kingdom's diverse and beautiful natural environments.

Moving on to the circular economy strategy, we find ourselves in a deep understanding of the law of sustainability. It materializes in improving resource utilization and minimizing waste through recycling available resources and extending the life of products. The scope of this strategy expands to encompass all economic sectors to ensure the sustainability of the economic system and achieve sustainable prosperity. To live in a society proud to embrace the law of sustainability.
The issue of improving resource utilization and reducing waste becomes prominent in individuals' lives when it comes to personal consumption and focuses on residents.

In your opinion, what is the most impactful strategy in the Saudi Green Initiative?

Smart Cities

In the era of information technology, smart cities stand out for their innovation and effective interaction with modern technologies within the framework of urban development plans. Many countries have attempted to apply innovative solutions using technological and architectural advancements to achieve sustainability. One notable example is:

Masdar City

Masdar City is a pioneering urban center in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, renowned for its commitment to sustainability in various economic, social, and environmental aspects. Key Achievements of Masdar City:


of buildings in Masdar City are constructed using low-carbon cement, and 90% of aluminum used is recycled.


Buildings in Masdar City use 40% less energy and water compared to similar structures.
Masdar City has been established on clear principles, including:

  • Sustainable Master Planning
  • –  Carefully integrating gathering places, gardens, landscapes, and transportation to enhance thermal comfort, energy and water efficiency, waste reduction, and carbon emissions mitigation.

    –  Effective use of renewable energy, with over 11 megawatts of solar panels deployed throughout the city.

  • Passive Design
  • –  Constructed using passive design principles that harmonize with the environment, aiming for maximum efficiency in energy and water consumption before resorting to technological solutions.
    –  Each part of Masdar City is meticulously designed to align with the exceptional climate of the Arabian Gulf.

  • Green Building Materials
  • –  Adoption of local, renewable, and recycled materials, including low-carbon concrete in building construction and recycling aluminum for covers, windows, and door frames.

  • Energy Harnessing for Sustainability
  • –  Sustainable energy practices, including advanced heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, high-efficiency fixtures, and the use of technology to enhance sustainability.

    Expansive Green Spaces

    King Salman Park

    Covering an area exceeding 16 square kilometers, King Salman Park proudly stands as the world’s largest urban park. Offering residents and visitors a diverse array of unique choices and experiences, the park boasts extensive green spaces and over a million trees. The park’s activities and events span more than 11.6 square kilometers.

    Notable features in the park include

    Environmental Elements

    • Green areas and open spaces covering over 9.3 million square meters, incorporating an Islamic-style Garden, vertical gardens, an agricultural maze garden, and a bird and butterfly sanctuary.

    • Diverse gardens covering 400,000 square meters.

    • A 7.2-kilometer circular pedestrian path.

    • The Wadi area covers 800,000 square meters.

    • Various water elements across 300,000 square meters.

    The Royal Arts Complex

    Spanning over 400,000 square meters, the complex includes
    • The National Theater with a capacity of 2,500 seats

    • Five diverse-sized closed theaters

    • An outdoor theater accommodating 8,000 spectators

    • A cinema complex with three halls

    • Four academies for the arts

    • And an educational center dedicated to children’s talent development.

    Visitor Center

    • An environmental-cultural informative center spanning 80,000 square meters

    • Featuring interactive exhibits about the park, multi-purpose halls, a meeting room, areas for tree and plant nurseries, open spaces, and outlets for food and beverages.

    Hotel and Residential Centers

    • Residential complexes provide 12,000 diverse housing units.

    • 16 hotels offering 2,300 hotel units.

    • Commercial spaces for restaurants, cafes, and retail covering over 500,000 square meters.

    • Office building complexes totaling 600,000 square meters.

    Public Service Centers and Facilities

    How do we know if our city is considered sustainable?

    Indicators used in the Sustainable Cities Index

    Social Dimension

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    Social Dimension

  • Education
  • Health
  • Demographics
  • Affordability (Facilitation)
  • Work-life balance
  • Environmental Dimension

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    Environmental Dimension

  • Environmental risks
  • Green spaces
  • Energy
  • Air pollution
  • Greenhouse gas emissions
  • Waste management
  • Drinking water and sanitation
  • Economic Dimension

    Read More +

    Economic Dimension

  • Transportation infrastructure
  • Economic development
  • Ease of doing business
  • Tourism
  • Communication
  • Employment
  • What are the sustainability indicators present in your city?

    If we want to change the world, we must start by changing the cities.

    Success Stories Around the World

    Success stories in sustainable urban development show that cities of various sizes can take effective measures to reduce energy consumption. These stories serve as inspiration for other cities to integrate sustainable development into their long-term plans. In this context, the challenge lies in extracting lessons from these stories and transforming them into practical actions that achieve a balance between economic prosperity and environmental protection.


    Known as the capital of sustainability for its pursuit of becoming the world’s first carbon-neutral capital by 2025. Copenhagen’s story began with the development of green infrastructure, followed by imposing taxes on cars, encouraging people to shift to environmentally friendly transportation. As a result, the number of cyclists significantly surpassed car users.


    Ranked as the best green country in Asia, Singapore stands out for adopting an eco-friendly philosophy. Despite challenges such as limited green spaces and high population density, Singapore wisely provides abundant green spaces with its hanging gardens within buildings and on their rooftops. Today, green spaces cover over 47% of its total area, making it an attractive tourist destination.


    Sweden, according to the OECD index, is the second country in achieving a balance between work and life. Swedes allocate more than 15 hours daily to leisure and relaxation. Despite this relaxation-oriented trend, the city is striving to excel in sustainability. Stockholm’s public transportation switched to 100% renewable energy in 2017, making it one of the leading sustainable cities globally.

    A Continuous Journey

    In our journey towards sustainability, we find humanity’s aspiration for a future of improved quality of life. It is a journey toward integration between humans and their environment, achieving economic progress while preserving the environment and enhancing social interaction.
    In this context, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia holds an advanced position as one of the most significant energy-producing countries, accelerating towards achieving its 2030 vision, embodying a strong commitment to sustainable development. From 2021, the initiative represents a qualitative leap towards realizing our vision. Building sustainable cities is undoubtedly a significant challenge, but at the same time, it is an opportunity for positive transformation and sustainable development. Let us surpass the boundaries of challenges for the future of our cities and leave a mark for the generations to come.

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