Connect with us


Patong beautification an ugly mess

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PATONG: Hotels and other businesses in Phuket’s capital of fun, having battled their way through the effects of the Bali bombing and the Sars epidemic, are now viewing with despair another deterrent to tourists. The deterrent this time is of local origin – a “beautification program” which has the beachfront looking like Sarajevo at the height of the Balkans war. Tourists trying to get from the beach road onto the beach itself need to battle across a construction site. Wolfgang Meusburger, General Manager of the Holiday Inn Patong, in a letter to the Patong Municipality on behalf of other hotels in the area, wrote, “We appreciate that the municipality is trying to … beautify the beach, but we have a hard time understanding why it has to be done during the high season.” Phadungwong Intong, Supervisor of Starbucks in Patong, agreed that the construction has had a significant impact on business, with the number of coffee drinkers down on last year by about 30% to 40%. Not everyone is despairing. Mark Chaiyaboon, Resident Manager of the Patong Beach Hotel, said that the project was good even if it currently disrupts businesses around Patong. Pointing out that similar projects and arguments had occurred in Pattaya, he said that he beleived the long-term outcome would be a big improvement. “I just think that right now everyone is upset because they are tearing up the road,” he said, adding, “There might have been a better way of planning it. “Some places are probably facing a little bit of a downside but in the long run everything will be a lot better than it is right now.” Novotel Coralia General Manager Rodney Trutwein said, “Obviously, doing it in the high season will affect some of the guests that go to Patong beach, but if you do it during the low season you have the Asian tourists and you also have the rain and the wind to contend with. So when is a good time?” Supagorn Meegaew, the Patong Municipality engineer supervising the walkway construction, explained that the Patong Beach Coastal Landscape Development, as the project is known, is aimed at making the beach look more pleasant and more organized and also at keeping the beach cleaner by using a 2.5-meter-wide walkway to separate the beach from the road. The Municipality had been planning the beach beautification project for about two years, he said, but had had to wait for budget from the government. He said, “when the government finally gave funding we didn’t have time to conduct a survey [of local businesses] because we were in a rush to start building.” He conceded that, ideally, it would have been better if a survey had been done. Clean Technology, the construction company hired by the Municipality, was chosen because it submitted the lowest bid, K. Supagorn told Gazette. The 40-million-baht, three-kilometer-long project consists of three parts. The first section of walkway starts where Prachanukhro Rd meets Thaweewong Rd and extends to Soi Bangla. The second section starts at the Loma Fountain on Thaweewong Rd and ends before Phra Baramee Rd. The third section goes a little way into Kalim from Patong. K. Supagorn said, “We started building in the low season and it was supposed to be finished by now, but it was delayed because people said that we were building too far out onto the beach, so we had to move it back five meters before we could resume construction.” The problem, says the Holiday Inn’s Mr Meusburger, is that ground for the entire length of the beach has been ripped up at the same time. “I’ve already had three couples leave the hotel. They said, ‘We are not coming to a beach where we cannot walk anymore, it’s just very unpleasant.'” He added that they had moved to Karon. K. Supagorn said that the Municipality was in a rush to complete the walkway before the end of December and so the contractor was trying to build the first and second sections at the same time. But, he added, Clean Technology did not have enough workers, which was slowing down construction and making it look doubtful whether it would be finished on schedule. So far the project is only half-complete.


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Video1 hour ago

Green line extension price issues, Hua Hin Peeping Toms | Good Morning Thailand | Ep.148

Thailand2 hours ago

BBC plans to reproduce Thailand’s hit TV show “Block Out” for British television

Thailand2 hours ago

Thailand Top Stories | PM says ‘no added restrictions’, Chiang Mai ‘cardigan girl | Dec 8

Crime2 hours ago

Wounded man flees to police station, says employer beat him, forced him to drink urine

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 hours ago

Bars warned it takes proper accreditation to be a restaurant

Bangkok3 hours ago

470 million baht “soapy” massage venue and business up for sale in Bangkok

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Pollution3 hours ago

Authorities warn of “unhealthy” levels of air pollution in Bangkok, elsewhere this week

Coronavirus (Covid-19)3 hours ago

Malaysia and China to collaborate in developing Covid-19 vaccine

World3 hours ago

Jetstar Asia to operate vaccinated travel lane between Bangkok and Singapore

World4 hours ago

Top US scientist says Omicron “almost certainly” no more severe than Delta

Phuket4 hours ago

More and more digital nomads choose Phuket for a “workation”

Coronavirus (Covid-19)4 hours ago

Thai PM says another national lockdown “unlikely” despite Omicron variant

Coronavirus World4 hours ago

Omicron unlikely to be more severe or to fully evade vaccines: WHO

Thailand19 hours ago

17 people in close contact with Omicron-infected traveller test negative

Thailand19 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Omicron under control, Illegal border crossing, Thailand’s recovery | Dec 7

Thailand3 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism10 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism10 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11