Renovation of Hua Lamphong may wait another three years: BMA

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It might be another two to three years until Bangkok’s historic Hua Lamphong station is developed for commercial use. The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration’s Office of Town Planning and Development has today put a hold to the State Railway of Thailand’s request to develop station and surrounding buildings for another two or three years.

According to reports, the 120-rai site planned for rebuilding as a mixed-use project falls under the blue zone in the city’s plan as laid up by the BMA, which is a government-owned territory that must be transformed to a commercial zone, known as the red zone, before work can commence. A source from the BMA told the Bangkok Post that the draft isn’t finished and it will take some time.

“The draft is not yet finished; it will be revised in conformity with the new town planning regulations. It will take some time, but it will be worth it.”

The SRT, on the other hand, can make a request to City Hall for a change of land use while the new town planning blueprint is being built, according to the source, who also stated that the request will be reviewed by the city planning board but will require public engagement.

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The Thai Port Authority had earlier proposed changing the use of its 2,353-rai blue zone land for commercial purposes. It took years for the adjustment to be approved and placed in the new town planning code.

The idea of rehabilitating Hua Lamphong station for commercial usage is part of SRT’s efforts to turn around its debt-ridden business. While commercial development takes place, historic buildings will be converted into museums or learning centers.

For more than a century, Hua Lamphong has served as the capital’s primary railway station.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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