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Patong Tunnel, at 3.98km long, to cost B14.4bn, work slated to start in 2023

Patong Tunnel, at 3.98km long, to cost B14.4bn, work slated to start in 2023

PHUKET: Construction of the long-awaited Patong Tunnel project, spanning 3.98km from Kathu to Patong at a cost of B14.47 billion, is now expected to begin in 2023 and open for service in 2027, Expressway Authority of Thailand (EXAT) Deputy Governor Gardphajon Udomdhammabhakdi has revealed.

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By The Phuket News

Friday 25 June 2021, 06:19PM


Image: Expressway Authority of Thailand / file

Image: Expressway Authority of Thailand / file

Mr Gardphajon was in Phuket in person yesterday (June 24) to be updated on progress on several transit megaprojects on the island, including the Patong Tunnel.

At a meeting of the Sub-Committee on Land Traffic Management of Phuket at Phuket Provincial Hall chaired by Phuket Vice Governor Vikrom Jakthee, Mr Gardphajon explained that the Public-Private Partnership Policy Committee had agreed in principle with the project.

“On May 31, the Policy Committee received EXAT’s recommendations for proceeding with the project before the plan is submitted to the Cabinet for further approval. EXAT will prepare additional information based on the opinions of the Policy Committee and we expect those to be sent to the State Enterprise Policy Office in July 2021,” he said.

Mr Gardphajon confirmed that the current plan is to construct a road with elevated sections and a four-lane tunnel through the hills separating Patong from Kathu. The road itself is to be 3.98km long and construction is expected to cost B14.47bn.

“The project is expected to commence in 2023. Construction will take four years and it will open for service in 2027,” he said.

Travelling through the tunnel is currently set to cost motorists B40 per car and B15 per motorcycle.

Regarding the “Muang Mai-Koh Kaew-Kathu Expressway Project”, Mr Gardphajon explained that the project was originally called the “Sakhu-Koh Kaew Road project” operated by the Department of Highways.

MACNELS SHIPPING PHUKET

“But now the central government has assigned EXAT come into action,” he said.

“Currently, the Expressway Authority is in the process of drafting a TOR [terms of reference] to hire a consultant to study the suitability of engineering, economics, finance and the environmental impact. The feasibility study is expected to begin in October 2021,” he added.

The project will stretch some 30km, starting at the intersection of Thepkrasattri Rd with Highway 4026, which leads to Nai Yang Beach. The expressway will parallel Thepkrasattri Rd all the way through Srisoonthorn and will provide a connection with the main intersection in Koh Kaew, then continue to run parallel with the bypass road to finally connect with with Highway 4029 in Kathu, which will allow motorists to use the Patong Tunnel, Mr Gardphajon said.

“For the Action Plan of the Muang Mai - Koh Kaew - Kathu project, construction is expected to begin in 2025 and the road open for service in 2028,” he said.

Mr Gardphajon asked for patience and clear communication in explaining the projects to the public.

“There are many important projects. Each project requires a period of time to complete. For example, the process of studying the environmental impact and the EIA, and the preparation of details, requires a period of time,” he said.

“The important thing is to create awareness and communicate to create an understanding among the people in the area to be informed of the process correctly, to participate and drive the implementation of various projects, to achieve results as soon as possible,” he added.

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JohnC | 28 June 2021 - 08:58:13

@kurt.  A "very small simple underpass". So now you think you are an expert on road and tunnel construction too. What would Thailand and the rest of the world do without your wise input and words of wisdom. LOL

Kurt | 27 June 2021 - 16:02:59

The taste of ' feasibility studies' that fill already several pockets with B40m encourage to do more feasibility studies coming years. Great times ahead for many Hiso well fed 'belly people'. They not even hide this nonsense anymore, safe as they feel to fork up tax payers money with that tunnel talks. It's just talking.
What is outcome of previous studies so far?

Capricornball | 27 June 2021 - 13:04:46

The bureaucratic morass is insane, but likely designed to distribute as much wealth into corrupt government pockets as possible...corrupt BKK officials looking out for their crook buddies in Phuket. And they should just skip the environmental review as nobody here gives a s**t as to the impacts of this wasteful project. It's all about greedy corrupt people feeding at the public trough.

ematt | 26 June 2021 - 19:52:14

I do hope the authorities have the good sense to consult with the farang experts posting in this forum before proceeding. 

Fascinated | 25 June 2021 - 19:09:05

What became of all the other 'feasibility studies' that have cost in the region of B40m so far- were they just to consider the feasibility of the feasibility of the feasibility of yet another feasibility study. All this and no accountability for the money pit.

Fascinated | 25 June 2021 - 19:05:48

Some will get 'unusually rich' off this

Nasa12 | 25 June 2021 - 18:51:30

Why they don’t start to money when crossing over the Sarasin bridge. 

Kurt | 25 June 2021 - 18:35:38

Time frame is nonsense. Who are they fooling? It took them already 5 years to construct a very small simple Chalong underpass.  Many thai motorist will continue to choose the way over the hill if they have to pay toll. Anyway, now first agaian (!) the start of a money making 'study trough'.

 

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