An infamous Pattaya eyesore has been scheduled for demolition, but the owners submitted a surprise request to resume construction on the Waterfront Condo building on Bali Hai Pier. The 53-story condominium at the entrance to the Bali Hai Pier has been abandoned for years since 2014 and last September authorities served a legal demolition order against the owners of the building.
By November Pattaya City Mayor Sonthaya Khunploem vowed to have the government demolish the building and bill Bali Hai Company for it, as they had claimed bankruptcy after all the lawsuits resulting from the building litigation.
But now, the Bali Hai Construction Company has requested to resume construction on the building and proposed some solutions to the issues that held up the project. The project came under fire from environmental groups and locals who claimed the building was illegal and blocking the popular Pattaya Hill viewpoint and a memorial to the Prince of Chumphon. The builders maintain all the permitting is fully legal.
Bali Hai Construction has offered to demolish the top 8 floors of the condo building to clear up the blocked view, though opponents say it doesn’t clear the view enough. They are also vowing to build roads connecting to nearby roads to diffuse traffic as Pattaya City officials say the building creates traffic as it doesn’t connect to roads and encroaches on public land.
The builders deny the latter claim, as the encroachment hinges on whether the building front is measured by the distance to the sea or to the end of the pier as some debate.
Even if those issues are cleared, it’s still questionable if the construction licence could even legally be approved as there are dozens of pending lawsuits from tenants who paid in advance for condos in the building that never materialised, not to mention the demolition orders approved a year ago already.
Online reactions to the proposal of resuming construction on the condominium building often maligned as an eyesore has been overwhelmingly negative with some local environmental groups vowed to file additional lawsuits if the Bali Hai Construction Company does win approval to build again.
SOURCE: The Pattaya News
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