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Phuket underpass will not open in time for Beach Games

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET: The Phuket Highways Office director has admitted that the underpass at the Darasamuth Intersection will not be complete in time to welcome the expected massive influx of tourists for the Asian Beach Games next week.

He did, however, vow that the underpass, located beside the Central Festival Phuket shopping mall on the bypass road, would be complete by the end of the year.

“We expected to finish the underpass by the end of October [story here], but the constructors were unable to meet the deadline because of recent heavy rains,” Phuket Highways Office Director Samak Luedwonghad told the Phuket Gazette.

“According to the contract, the official deadline is March 5 next year. We expect to be done earlier than that, in time for the new year.”

Meanwhile, the underpass at the Samkong Intersection, near the Tesco Lotus shopping center on the bypass road, is “about 36 per cent complete”, with a deadline of June 25 next year.

“The Tesco underpass is a bit behind, as the contractor had to move power poles and water pipes,” Mr Samak explained.

“They had to co-ordinate with the Phuket City Municipality and the Provincial Waterworks Authority. The work is complete now, and we are confident we will meet the deadline.”

Governor Nisit Jansomwong told the Gazette that the builders would continue working as normal, but called on them to make travel as convenient as possible for motorists.

“I would like Mr Samak to talk with contractors about moving the concrete barriers currently installed on the road above the underpass. The lanes are far too narrow, there is not enough room for motorists to drive.

“I also want to see more lights and signs installed to inform motorists of the construction and direction of traffic flow.”

Mr Samak added that Traffic Police would also step in to help direct traffic during rush hour.

“I apologize for any inconvenience. I have contacted local the traffic police, and they have said they will do their best to help traffic flow during busy hours,” he said.

“We hope to complete the underpass as soon as possible. I think it will be a great gift to the people for the New Year.”

— Chutharat Plerin


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