Building Sea City is a massive and challenging engineering project that requires constant innovation. As seen in the 1994 image from Landsat, the area is a natural estuary with tidal creeks. The design of Sea City follows these existing tidal creeks to bring water inland from the Gulf.
The first phase of construction began in 2003. The 2004 Landsat image shows the first artificial waterway. Eventually, the sea will be brought inland to the desert by about 9 kilometers on what was once desolate unusable salt marsh. The lagoons created are 3–4 meters deep on average.
The water in the lagoons needs to be flushed and kept circulating so it doesn’t become stagnant. With the Gulf’s tidal range of 2.7 meters, this flushing happens in the waterways of Sea City naturally. Farther inland, however, tidal action needs a little help. Giant gates help control the flow of the tides and ensure circulation of the entire lagoon system. It works like a natural pump. Testing of the seawater has shown that its quality is excellent.