Four options for Chalong-Patong road
PHUKET: Four possible routes for the new Chalong-Patong road have been proposed during a public meeting at the Phuket Merlin Hotel on Thursday (May 10).
Monday 14 May 2012, 04:03PM
During the meeting, deputy project manager Banpote Jaroensathayatam unveiled the four routes for discussion, all of which start at Yothatikarn Rd (the road to Lung Pu Supha temple), near Amazing Bukit Safari in Chalong.
“There are two ways to do this,” explained Mr Banpote. “The first is to improve the existing unsealed gravel road, which connects Yothatikarn Rd in Chalong with Patong.
“This way will have less impact on the environment but will be long and bendy.”
There are two possible exit routes for the upgraded road – one route exiting at Nanai Rd and the other exiting at Ha Sip Pi, he said.
“The other ways is to construct a new road, which will be shorter and have fewer bends but may have more impact.”
There are two possible routes for the new road, Mr Banpote said. Part of the route of the proposed road passes through protected forest.
Only one route out of the four options will be chosen.
In March the project was presented to the Mobile Cabinet for approval, alongside a request for B60 million. Though the budget has not yet been approved, cabinet agreed to the project.
The provincial government has already assigned three consulting firms – TransConsult, Phisut Technology and Panya Consultant Company – to inspect the area, report on the possible environmental impact, canvas local people’s opinions, and design the road.
According to PWTP director Wongsakorn Noonchookan, “This plan has been discussed for a long time, but it could not previously happen because there was no Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) carried out.”
When this road is completed, it is expected it will reduce traffic congestion on the existing roads to Patong, including Prabaramee and Patak Rd. “It will also shorten the way from Chalong to Patong and can be another evacuation route,” said Mr Wongsakorn.
The project is currently undergoing an Initial Environmental Examination (IEE) and public hearing, which according to Mr Banpote shows that most Chalong and Patong residents agree with the plan.
“After we have made the decision about which route to take, we will send information to the Office of Natural Resources & Environmental Policy and Planning (ONEP) to carry out an EIA. Then we will ask officials and local people to meet again before starting construction, which will take about a year,” said Mr Banpote.
Charoen Tewabutra, Chalong sub-district headman (Kamnan), is a big supporter of the project.
“I have tried to get this project started for a long time. It should happen as soon as possible because this road will be to the advantage of all Phuket people, not only those living in Chalong or Patong.”