Ananda to appeal court's condo ruling

Ananda to appeal court's condo ruling

The Ashton Asoke project
The Ashton Asoke project

SET-listed Ananda Development plans to appeal the verdict of the Central Administrative Court, which revoked a notification document to allow the construction or modification of Ashton Asoke, a joint venture luxury condo project with Japanese developer Mitsui Fudosan.

Chanond Ruangkritya, Ananda's president and chief executive, said the company, which holds 51% in the joint venture, wants to appeal the July 30 ruling at the Supreme Administrative Court.

"We will try our best for the 578 families who are customers living at the place since the project transferred units in mid-2018," he said. "It may take up to 3-5 years."

On July 30, the Central Administrative Court ruled the construction permit of Ashton Asoke, located next to Sukhumvit MRT station on Asoke Road, must be revoked.

According to the Building Control Act, for sites of high-rise buildings or extra-large buildings with a total area of more than 30,000 square metres, one side of the land exceeding 12 metres that is adjacent to a public road shall have a roadway width of not less than 18 metres. In addition, public roads shall have a roadway width of not less than 18 metres.

Pictured on the right is the entrance to Ashton Asoke on Asoke Road.

The court ruled the plot where the project is located does not have any part with a length of at least 12 metres connecting to a public road that has a width of at least 18 metres.

The ruling found the part of Ashton Asoke's plot that was submitted for the construction permit of a 50-storey tower is owned by the Mass Rapid Transit Authority (MRTA).

The plot is currently used as the project's exit and entrance to Asoke Road. The project's plot given the construction permit is connected to a public road.

Mr Chanond said the MRTA on July 4, 2014, allowed the project to use this MRTA plot -- which the MRTA used as part of a parking area at the time -- as the project's exit and entrance to Asoke Road.

He said the company discussed this permission more than 20 times with several government agencies.

On Feb 10, 2015, the project's environmental impact assessment report was approved.

However, the Central Administrative Court last Friday ruled the MRTA's allowance for the project to use its plot is illegal because that use is not in line with the objective of land expropriation and is not for mass transit business.

That land was expropriated by MRTA to build the Blue Line in 1999.

Regarding this point, Mr Chanond argued the company had a pre-consultation with the MRTA since the project's feasibility study.

He said the MRTA confirmed its authority for that allowance as the plot is used as an exit and entrance to Sukhumvit MRT station's parking area.

"We are not the first project in which state agencies allowed use of their land," said Mr Chanond.

"The verdict hurts many unit owners at the project, both Thai and from some 20 nationalities."

He did not suggest any compensation to the customers if the appeal fails with the Supreme Administrative Court.

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