The revised plans were submitted to Rawai Municipality “in the last week of October”, Mayor Aroon told The Phuket News yesterday (Nov 14).
“Their workers are now continuing to demolish those parts of the buildings that were deemed to be illegal – the third floor of what was supposed to be a two-storey building, and the second floor of what was to be a one-storey building,” he said.
However, Mayor Aroon declined to allow The Phuket News to view the plans filed with his office, which is the local government authority for the area, claiming, “I cannot give [the plans] to press. It is the owner’s property and they have not authorised me to give the plans out.”
Asked if any deadline had been set for the demolition of the illegal sections of the buildings, Mayor Aroon said, “Approximately one year after the owner submitted the new plans with the municipality.
“Let them finish their work according to the authority of Rawai Municipality. The owner of the property does not want to see more complaints about this property in social media.”
The approval of the revised plans and the ongoing demolition of the illegal sections of the buildings come without any consent from Phuket Governor Norraphat Plodthong, despite Mayor Aroon explanation earlier this year that the demolition of the illegal sections could not be completed without the Governor’s approval.
“The demolition is not yet finished because I am still waiting for orders from the Phuket Governor. I need the governor’s document outlining the official plan… Once this document is received then the demolition can continue,” he told The Phuket News on Sept 25. (See story here.)
Asked for his current understanding of that requirement, Mayor Aroon said, “Even though there has been no update from the Governor I have the authority to allow this to continue.
“I am still waiting for that information,” he said.
The “buildings on the cape” sparked public outrage earlier this year, with scores of tourists and residents – Thai and foreign, alike – voicing their anger over how the structures, to be built as either a luxury private residence or a small luxury resort, had destroyed one of the best scenic ocean views on the island.
Construction was ordered to stop on July 31 after it was found that the incomplete structures were already exceeding the building permit issued by Rawai Municipality.
Initial investigations overseen by Capt Boworn Phromgaewngam, Deputy Director of the Phuket branch of the Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC), confirmed that the project was on legally acquired private land – but also that the project had been issued a building permit allowing four three-level buildings to be built at the site. (See story here.)