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Plans to build bridge connecting Koh Lanta to Krabi mainland in the works

Caitlin Ashworth

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Plans to build bridge connecting Koh Lanta to Krabi mainland in the works | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Nation Thailand
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Plans to build a bridge connecting Koh Lanta with Krabi’s mainland is in the works . Currently, a ferry service transports people and vehicles on a boat, which is more like a barge than a ferry, to and from the island. It’s a fairly time consuming process that often backs up traffic.

The Department of Rural Roads has an environmental impact assessment is now being conducted for the potential bridge that is planned to run 1,950 metres from Ban Hua Hin on the mainland to Lanta Noi, near the same pick up and drop off points for the ferry.

The ferry, run by Songserm Tran Service, has a limited capacity for vehicles and operates from 6am to 10pm. The ferry gets packed during the peak season and backs up traffic. Some are also concerned with the oil and diesel pollution associated with the ferry.

The department’s director general Pathom Chaloeywares says the bridge will solve travel difficulties and boost development in the area. Details on the project should be finalised by March 2021 and a budget requested by 2022. If the project is approved, construction would start in 2023 and be completed by 2025.

Back in 2016, a 400 million baht bridge was built connecting Koh Lanta’s 2 main islands, Lanta Noi and Lanta Yai. Before that, a car ferry was used to transport people from island to island.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    November 12, 2020 at 6:18 pm

    Another grand scheme, which is unlikely to be needed, and which Thailand cannot fund unless they can attract foreign investment – unlikely now.
    I suggest they build bridges over roads so that Thais can sleep under them.

    • Avatar

      Gosport

      November 12, 2020 at 7:01 pm

      That is what I agree with you. Thai seems having many grand plans in the works. Grand plans for bubble travel, detailed plans for visa grace, extended plan for economic recovery. That is what I love. That Sabai life.

      • Avatar

        preesy chepuce

        November 12, 2020 at 11:58 pm

        Unrealistic plans, deluded plans, not plans at all, mr Chinese Thai.

    • Avatar

      Ted

      November 12, 2020 at 8:35 pm

      I used to work in the are, about 8 years ago and back then —with foreign tourist and campy— nothing happened , it’s the Thai culture; don’t plan, if you want any action, because if you do nothing will happen! on the other hand, suddenly you’ll have a new landmark destroying the natural sight of something pristine

  2. Avatar

    rr

    November 12, 2020 at 7:05 pm

    I do not understand why they always want to use such pompous architectures for a structure that can easily be just a trestle bridge with a middle wide passage for small boats. Moreover, the direction is also rather uneconomical and unrealistic. They can make a shorter bridge from Bam Hua Hin to Bam Klong Mak, taking advantage of the Ko Pling islet for further support, preserving the current ferry route as secondary. They show such an inappropriate incompetence and tendency for wasting taxpayers’ money and resources.

  3. Avatar

    Khun plastic

    November 12, 2020 at 7:28 pm

    A good idea,the thousands of out of work now ex hospitality industry workers in the area could be retrained and used on the project.

    It could perhaps be called white elephant bridge,from what I understand they are considered very lucky in old Siam so a bit of merit could be gained along the way also.
    win,win.

    • Avatar

      preesy chepuce

      November 12, 2020 at 11:59 pm

      How many waiters, hotel room cleaners, and spa workers understand civil engineering?

      • Avatar

        Khun plastic

        November 13, 2020 at 6:42 pm

        They could easily be retrained as labourers,have you not seen that film bridge on the river kwai?

  4. Avatar

    Mister Stretch

    November 13, 2020 at 8:53 am

    Terrible idea, just terrible.

    Why is it that they want to destroy the beautiful simplicity of much of the country and turn it all into tourist-attracting garbage like Pattaya and Patong?

    Much of Koh Lanta is peaceful, local, natural…very Thai. Adding this idiotic bridge would turn the island into another crappy tourist grab.

    The island deserves a better future than this bridge would give it.

    • Avatar

      Don R

      November 13, 2020 at 3:23 pm

      Agreed. Koh Lanta is attractive because there is no bridge.

      • Avatar

        Khun plastic

        November 14, 2020 at 5:07 pm

        As overhead from a charter boat owner at the harbour.

  5. Avatar

    Mike

    November 13, 2020 at 10:23 am

    Allow me to decode this for you:

    in the works -> officials trying to figure out how to skim money from the project

    • Avatar

      preesy chepuce

      November 13, 2020 at 9:06 pm

      I don’t believe that all officials are like that, if they were, the country would be raided to bankruptcy with all kinds of pointless civil engineering projects. There must be some conscientious people up there counterbalancing the ones who keep floating all these optimistic lottery ticket “plans”.

      • Avatar

        Khun plastic

        November 13, 2020 at 11:25 pm

        They often likes getting gullible overseas companies involved to risk share/fleece.
        Look into the don mueang express way fiasco and that will tell you quite a bit about Thai buisssiness ethics.

        Often the overseas partners get fleeced thus stopping the country going bankrupt.

        It is not all Thai buisssiness peoples I agree but I feel the proportion of dishonest buissness practice in Thailand is very high.

        I also accept that western buissness practice is also corrupted.
        if you look at the thai,airbus and Rolls-Royce dealings in relation to the a340 my personal thoughts are quite a few people should be behind bars.

        sadly the law and justice are different thing’s.

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Tourism

Academics call on government to hurry up and help the tourism industry

Maya Taylor

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Academics call on government to hurry up and help the tourism industry | The Thaiger

Leading Thai academics are calling on the government to get a move on and help the tourism industry before it’s too late. Addressing a gathering arranged by the Foundation for Labour and Employment Promotion, Kiriya Kulkolkran from Thammasat University’s Faculty of Economics, pointed to the 80% drop in international tourism as a result of the Covid-19 fallout. His estimate includes the first few months of the year when there was actually a functional tourism industry in Thailand.

According to a report in the Bangkok Post, Kiriya says just 4% of businesses in the tourism sector say they’ve made the same amount or more than they did before Covid-19. She adds that a survey shows employees in the industry are concerned about debt accumulation and “extremely worried about the future”.

Bovorn Subsing, from Chulalongkorn University’s Social Research Institute, has backed up the comments, saying tourism workers have seen their wages drop by 60%, while still facing the same, or higher, cost of living. The result is that most are now in debt.

Kiriya predicts the devastation could continue for over 3 years, affecting not just tourism operators but the entire supply chain, as well as new graduates and those seeking their first job. She says that until the sector recovers, the government needs to provide tailored help for businesses, singling out Phuket hotels, who are struggling to survive without foreign guests.

The islands of Phuket and Samui, plus the other ‘tourist’ islands around Thailand, are facing a particular problem as they’re mostly geared for the international tourist market. Domestic tourism, rebooted last July when the local airlines were permitted to fly again, has mostly shunned the popular tourist islands.

One worker at a Phuket hotel, 52 year old Anchisa Sirinanthasak, addressed the forum in support of a possible co-payment scheme for hotel workers. It’s understood most hotel operators are paying employees 62-75% of their normal salary, which works out at around 8,000-9,000 baht per person and is not enough to cover their costs.

Meanwhile, Manop Kaewphaka from Homenet Thailand, a non-profit that protects home-based workers, has called on the government to allow foreign tourists back into the Kingdom and to provide more support for informal workers, in the form of wage guarantees and co-payment.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Officials criticised over Covid border screening measures

The Thaiger

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Officials criticised over Covid border screening measures | The Thaiger

Thailand’s Public Health Ministry is being criticised over its border screening measures after an Indian man, who stayed in Thailand for 3 months, tested positive for Covid-19 in Krabi province while remaining asymptomatic.

Walairat Chaifoo, director of the Epidemiology Bureau, has defended the screening measures by saying the Department of Disease Control has initiated mass tests for those “at-risk” at their workplaces in June, with the results showing no infections. Furthermore, all hospitals per the DDC, are required to monitor those patients with lung infections or respiratory issues, as they are known to be symptoms of Covid.

“We have never lowered our guard for the surveillance system. Mass testing is still going on to detect the deadly virus.”

“But what we have seen more often is many cases of people who don’t show signs of illness or long-time infection. It means the virus still exists in the country and people must not ignore self-preventive measures.”

The 37 year old Indian patient has joined 95% of those who have been diagnosed with Covid without displaying symptoms. Such a finding makes it apparent that a local infection can still occur through an asymptomatic patient. But despite such findings, Thailand remains one of the countries deemed successful in containing the virus. Currently, Thailand has less than 4,000 cases reported with 60 deaths – a number that is far below most other countries. Globally, the cases have soared to 50 million with another projected spike in infections coming in the next 2 months.

The National Vaccine Institute says the kingdom could get vaccinations 6 months after the Pfizer vaccine is launched, in which the government says it hopes to vaccinate half of the population by the first half of next year. No vaccine has yet passed the Phase 3 trials, the final trials before cleared by national health agencies.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Tourism

Krabi’s Ao Nang businesses shut up or sell up

The Thaiger

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Krabi’s Ao Nang businesses shut up or sell up | The Thaiger
PHOTOS: Sanook.com

Ao Nang, Krabi’s tourist strip, is struggling under the strain of no customers or tourists. Thai Residents reports that there are now at least 10 hotels up for sale valued at billions of baht. Businesses and hotels along the popular Ao Nang tourist strip have been shutting down because of the prolonged closure of Thailand’s borders to general tourism. Even domestic tourists have done little to provide a much-needed kick start to the province’s tourist economy.

The hotels up for sale include 3-5 star hotels, some in prime positions. Owners say they have decided “it’s time to move on”, according to Sanook.com. Krabi’s local economy continues to dwindle as the impact from Thailand’s border closures bites. Even if tourists head to Ao Nang and the province, most tourist attractions are closed or empty. For domestic tourists, Krabi, like Phuket and Koh Samui, are more difficult to reach and have evolved to attract international tourists rather than locals.

The Sanook News Team found that much of the Ao Nang tourist strip was like an “abandoned town”.

“Where the city was always busy full of tourists and vendors, the town is now empty full of silence.

The report estimated that only 10% of businesses remained open. Even the 7-11s had been boarded up or shuttered.

“Even giant hotels are also affected with many decided to shut down and put the property up for sale. When visiting Ao Nang today, many hotels have big for sale signs by the road.”

The Krabi Tourism Council’s Ekkawit Pinyothammanothai says that the rumours are true.

“At least 10 hotels on Ao Nang Beach are up for sale, most of them are big hotels ranging from 3-5 stars. The hotels together are worth billions of baht, each realising they cannot carry on.”

Ao Nang’s small businesses, mostly focussed on the passing tourist trade and beachgoers, have also shut down on the beach because 80-90% of all income in the tourist town are derived from foreign tourists, according to Ekkawit.

Krabi's Ao Nang businesses shut up or sell up | News by The Thaiger

SOURCES: Thai Residents | sanook.com

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