Mr MaAnn’s defence of the construction literally on Surin Beach seawall follows several complaints from local residents sent directly to The Phuket News.
However, Mr MaAnn told The Phuket News late yesterday (Nov 13), “I have been receiving a large number of complaints from locals over the years asking why I have not done something about the beach at Surin eroding and the sand being dragged away.
“So I decided it was time to renovate the wave barrier. Due to the monsoon season, waves have dragged sand from the beach, causing several problems,” he said.
“First, it causes trees that have been there for over 100 years old to fall over. This is a real shame,” Mr MaAnn noted.
“Then there is the exposure of bamboo sticks placed under the sand. This takes away the beauty of the beach,” he added.
“It also causes some partial concrete walls to become more exposed and gradually erode.” he said.
The move to install a seawall followed a meeting that included local residents, Mr MaAnn explained.
“There has been no regulations or methods to prevent any of this until now, so we had a meeting with villagers, the community, officials from the regional environment office, municipality officials and others to set some guidelines and then work with the Department of Public Works and Town & Country Planning to plan a new design for the shoreline.
“About 40% of the construction will be focused on a new barrier, which will be concealed under the sand, while 60% of the construction will be focussed on increasing the beauty and scenery of Surin Beach,” he added.
“And another main emphasis will be on protecting nature, such as trees,” he said.
However, Thawee Homhuan of the Phuket Provincial Department of Public Works and Town & Country Planning confirmed to The Phuket News today (Nov 14) that the current plans for the seawall and public area renovations at Surin Beach have nothing to do with previous plans to create a “Rajabhakti Park” at a cost of B800 million. (See story here.)
These plans have been scrapped, Mr Thawee confirmed.
Those plans were changed in January this year to simplify the original design into a “Surin Public Park”, an open area with toilets and washrooms where beachgoers can shower. (See story here.)
“There will be not be a ‘Rajabhakti Park’. There will be only renovations for an underground barrier and sidewalks to be installed,” Mr Thawee said.
“We will not be building any parks at this initial stage, not even toilets,” he added.
“Currently, we must perfect the design for the beach layout, so there is a slight extension of time before beginning construction.
“The whole project will be completed within a year,” Mr Thawee said.