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Chalong-Patong wriggles forward, opens ’soon’

Chalong-Patong wriggles forward, opens ’soon’

PHUKET: The new permanent road under construction from Chalong to Patong is moving ahead and “will be able to officially open to the public soon”, the Phuket Provincial Administration Organisation (PPAO) has reported.

By The Phuket News

Saturday 14 January 2023, 09:00AM

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.

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Capricornball | 15 January 2023 - 11:09:11

@Fascinated- So, packed gravel on cut soil makes a "firm" road base? Yeah right. Once the subsurface becomes saturated (which it will), the soils and gravel will turn to an earthen pudding and lose its bearing capacity. Continued pounding from overloaded busses and trucks and everything else will all contribute to a short life for many sections of this road. Just watch.

Capricornball | 14 January 2023 - 20:10:26

This is future entertainment for all the "I told you so" follks. These raw, near vertical cut slopes will be sliding in the first wet season. The unreinforced road bed covered in  asphalt will be rutting and crumbling within the first year. It actually looks like "0" engineering went into it, and forget about the scar on the "protected forest". What an embarrassing ho...

Fascinated | 14 January 2023 - 13:19:46

One wonders if the armchair 'experts' actually considered that the compacted gravel is there to be a firm base before the road is paved? Seems like they ARE doing something properly the first time but hey, lets just knock it. 

Kurt | 14 January 2023 - 10:50:31

Not surprised. There is a difference between thai touting/marketing themselve and reality, as we see on photos. No deadline early November, no 12 m wide road. Never count on Thai time planning and words, it slips away as sand in the hand between the fingers as we always experience.

JohnC | 14 January 2023 - 09:30:33

Lucky if it is even 6 metres wide. Can't believe they are not surfacing it properly. Come next rainy season that crushed stone will become big furrows as rain pours down the slopes and dredges it way through to the dirt below. How about just once you do something properly first time!


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