Transport minister: Feeder buses to save Red and Purple Lines

Photo courtesy of Renown Travel

Transport Minister Suriya Juangroongruangkit slammed naysayers in Parliament, asserting confidence that the state-owned Purple and Red Lines train services are on the brink of turning a profit within the next six months, all thanks to a game-changing feeder bus system.

Addressing critics of the government’s daring move to cap maximum fares at 20 baht for electric train services in Bangkok, Suriya unveiled the success story of the Purple and Red Lines. He claimed that since the fare cap was enforced on November 30, the income from fare collections has witnessed a steady surge, rescuing the two lines from a staggering daily loss of 6.9 million baht.

Minister Suriya announced the impending launch of a state-of-the-art feeder bus system equipped with air-conditioned electric buses, set to roll out within the next six months. This visionary initiative aims to streamline the commute for passengers to and from bustling train stations currently lacking other bus services.

The transport minister pledged to negotiate with private entities operating other electric train services, persuading them to align their fares with the 20 baht maximum. Yet, a catch remains – compensating these entities for any potential losses incurred during this fare adjustment, reported Thai PBS World.

The Transport Ministry is crafting a groundbreaking draft bill proposing a single ticket system for all electric train services. If approved by the Cabinet, this could herald a new era of convenience and affordability for Bangkok’s commuters.

In related news, the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) received a directive from the government to broaden the Red Line electric train system to include Ayutthaya and Nakhon Pathom. Surapong Piyachote, Deputy Transport Minister, disclosed that the existing 8.8 kilometre stretch from Rangsit to Thammasat University’s Rangsit Campus will be extended to Ayutthaya.

In other news, defective Yellow Line monorail trains have been recalled and are no longer in use as they undergo comprehensive safety checks, according to Surapong Piyachote.

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Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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