Phuket Island light rail transit

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Phuket Island Light Rail Transit
Overview
OwnerMRTA
LocalePhuket and Phang Nga, Thailand
Transit typeLight rail transit
Number of lines1
Number of stations23 or 24
Operation
Operation will start2023–2024
Technical
System length58.6 km (36.4 mi)


Phuket Island LRT
S01 Phuket International Airport
Airport interchange
S02 Thalang
S03 Thao Thep Krasattri and Thao Si Sunthon Monument
S04 Koh Kaew
S05 Phuket Bus Terminal
Bus interchange
S06 Phuket Rajabhat University
S07 Tung Ka
S08 Meung Kao
(Old Town)
S09 Clock Tower
S10 Bang Neow
S11 Phuket Public Library
S12 Saphan Hin
S13 Sakdidet
S14 Dao Rung
S15 Wichit
S16 Chaofa (East)
S17 Palai
S18 Ban Koak Tanod
S21 Tha Chalong Intersection

The Phuket Island Light Rail Transit project is a planned 58.6 km light rail transit system for Phuket and Phang Nga Provinces in Thailand. The completed project will consist of 23[1] or 24[2] stations from Takua Thung District in Phang Nga Province to Phuket City, then terminating at Chalong. Phase one will connect Phuket International Airport to Chalong. The second phase will extend the line north to Takua Thung District. The line will have both at-grade and elevated sections.[citation needed] The cost of the project is estimated at 39.4 billion baht (approximately US$1.2 billion).

History[edit]

The original plan for mass transit on Phuket Island was first proposed in 2005[citation needed]. However, it was not until 2010 that the Phuket governor proposed a heavy rail metro idea as a requirement for the island to meet increasing tourism and local transport demands.[3] By mid-2014, the project had evolved into a planned light rail line of nearly 60 km in length running from the north of the island to the south.[4] The Ministry of Transport approved the project in principle in November 2015.[5] Public meetings were held in February 2017 seeking feedback and comments from the public into the project.[6]

In April 2017, it was announced that the MRTA had approved the Ministry of Transport's Office of Transport and Traffic Policy and Planning (OTP) design of the project with a view to seeking cabinet approval in 2018.[7] Cabinet approval was granted on 11 September 2018. It is seen as a virtual guarantee that the project will proceed.[1]

Alignment[edit]

The LRT line will run along the north-south axis of Phuket Island. The planned route stretches from Takua Thung in Phang Nga to Chalong in Phuket. Phase one will connect Phuket International Airport with Chalong, about 40 kilometres.[8] Phase one construction is expected to take three years.[1] The MRTA and the OTP are studying the second phase, from Takua Thung to Phuket Airport.[1]

The line is projected to serve up to 70,000 passengers per day, passing by 40 schools and business districts en route. Fares are expected to cost from 15 to 25 baht.[1] Some critics have cited officials to say that fares will top out at 100–137 baht.[9]

Progress[edit]

Contracts for project investment studies will be signed by the end of July 2018. The studies will take around four months to complete. They will then be submitted to the MRTA board for approval by early-2019, after which they will be reviewed by the Transport Ministry. Bidding for the project will start in 2020.[8][1]

Phuket provincial authorities have reportedly been in discussions with both Siemens and Bombardier regarding the project.[10]

According to OTP Deputy Director Wilairat Sirisoponsil, the Phuket light rail project design is complete, and has been added into the PPP (Public–Private Partnership) Fast Track.[11]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Theparat, Chatrudee; Jotikasthira, Om (12 September 2018). "MRTA closes in on 2 rail plans". Bangkok Post. Retrieved 2019-01-31.
  2. ^ "Phuket light rail to be completed by 'about 2023', says Vice Governor". Phuket News. 2018-08-30. Retrieved 31 January 2019.
  3. ^ http://www.manager.co.th/Daily/ViewNews.aspx?NewsID=9540000101547
  4. ^ "Details of light rail tram system for Phuket revealed". The Phuket News. 4 June 2014.
  5. ^ "Phuket gets nod for B23.5bn light rail". Phuket News. 20 November 2017.
  6. ^ "Phuket input sought for light-rail plans". Phuket News. 31 January 2017.
  7. ^ "เร่งรถรางเบาภูเก็ตเฟสแรกชง ครม. นำร่องสนามบิน-ห้าแยกประมูลปลายปี 60". Manager. 28 April 2017.
  8. ^ a b "Bidding date set for 2020 for Phuket's new tram network". Bangkok Post. 18 July 2018. Retrieved 18 July 2018.
  9. ^ Newton, Tim (2019-01-22). "The 35 billion baht white elephant – Phuket's light rail". The Thaiger. Retrieved 31 January 2019.
  10. ^ "Siemens, Bombardier considered for Thai airport rail contract - FAZ". Reuters. 19 February 2018.
  11. ^ Mueanhawong, Kritsada (2018-06-04). "Phuket light rail and Patong tunnel project update". The Thaiger. Phuket. Retrieved 2018-11-06.