Phuket’s Sarasin Bridge to remain amid new construction plans

Photo courtesy of Phuket News

Phuket’s iconic Sarasin Bridge is set to remain untouched amid plans to construct a new bridge connecting the island to the mainland, according to Yutthana Phitak, the Chief of Phuket Highways Office.

The announcement was made at a meeting held yesterday to address concerns over the Sarasin Bridge’s future, sparked by social media rumours of its potential demolition.

The Sarasin Bridge, which was built in 1951 with a budget of 28.77 million baht and officially opened on July 7, 1967, is deeply ingrained in Phuket’s history. With a length of 660 metres, it was the first bridge to connect Phuket and Phang Nga.

The structure has since gained a rich cultural significance intertwined with the tragic tale of forbidden love between bus driver Ko Dam Sae Tan and local teacher Kiw Kanchana Sae Ngo, who ended their lives together by jumping from the bridge in 1978.

Yutthana’s announcement followed Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin’s island visit last month, during which he was presented with plans to build a new bridge. However, no details of these plans were disclosed to the public.

Following this visit, social media was flooded with claims that the Sarasin Bridge would be demolished to allow larger yachts and vessels to pass underneath, leading to widespread public concern.

The highways office chief dismissed these rumours, stressing that the Highways Department has no plans, now or in the future, to demolish the Sarasin Bridge for the sake of a transportation network project. He noted that any such project would require a detailed study, including a public hearing to gather local opinions and an environmental impact assessment before any budget proposal could be implemented.

The Highways Department is indeed planning a new Sarasin Bridge to improve travel between Phuket and Phang Nga. However, Yutthana emphasised that the proposal is still in the concept stage and that a budget has been requested to study the project’s design details, a process set to cost 80 million baht, reported Phuket News.

Yutthana concluded his statement by assuring that the Sarasin Bridge would not be impacted by the new construction.

“This will be one of the points that will connect the two areas, but the Sarasin Bridge will not be affected.”

Phuket NewsThailand NewsTransport News

Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

Related Articles