The announcement came through a brief report of PPAO President Rewat Areerob inspecting the site in person on Thursday and Friday (Jan 12-13).
Mr Rewat was accompanied at the site by PPAO Deputy President Tiwat Seedokbub who had been traveling to the jungle ”behind Luang Pu Supha Temple” at least twice a month before January and now does it even more often.
The reports by PPAO are never rich in detail and lack, for instance, the projected date of completion. Photos from the site indicate stable progress in construction. still as of now the road does not look like a 12-metre-wide carriageway touted in late October.
According to the most recent report by PPAO, the workers are now using crushed stones which are sprayed with water and compacted to become a firm road surface suitable for all vehicle, not only heavy machinery, 4x4 pickup trucks and enduro motorcycles.
The Chalong-Patong road traverses steep hills for a total length of 3.5 kilometres, from behind the Klong Kata reservoir in Chalong to 50 Pi Rd in Patong. Before the current ongoing roadworks, which began Oct 24, the road was little more than a dirt track.
Attempts to have the track officially designated to become a permanent road had been repeatedly proposed for more than a decade, but were denied as the road passes through a protected forest area. That hurdle was instantly dismissed as officials scrambled for alternative routes to Patong following the Patong Hill landslide on Oct 19.
At the time the project began, it was estimated to take two weeks to complete, giving a target deadline of opening a temporary road to traffic in early November.
The plans were then changed in favour of a 12-metre-wide road. Since then no specific dates of completion have been announced.