MRTA extends contract for Pink Line by 345 days
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MRTA extends contract for Pink Line by 345 days

The Pink Line monorail undergoes a test run.
The Pink Line monorail undergoes a test run.

The Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA) has extended the contract for the Pink Line monorail project for another 345 days, the third extension it has granted.

Highways Department director-general Sarawut Songsivilai, speaking in his capacity as the MRTA board chairman, said the expansion will change the estimated finish date from July this year to June 2024.

A deadline extension approval for the first 34.5 kilometres of the line was passed by the MRTA board on May 18, said Mr Sarawut.

The contractor, Northern Bangkok Monorail (NBM), cited Covid-19 as the main reason for the contract extension.

According to Mr Sarawut, this was the third time that NBM had sought an extension from the MRTA.

The MRTA initially extended the project deadline by a year, aiming to complete construction by September 2022.

However, NBM then requested a second extension of 290 days, pushing the new deadline to July this year.

One of the reasons for both postponements was a delay in the transfer process for the area that will be used to construct Nonthaburi Civic Centre Station and Nopparat Station.

Mr Sarawut also cited the complexity of the area.

He drew particular attention to a floodway construction project by the Highways Department, which could affect construction of Chaeng Wattana 14 Station, the Chaloem Phrakiat Government Centre Station, and TOT Station.

The Pink Line's construction was 96.43% complete as of last month, he said.

The Pink Line has 30 stations linking Khae Rai in Nonthaburi to the Min Buri area in the east of Bangkok.

It will link with the Orange Line in Min Buri and will connect with the Green Line at Wat Phra Sri Mahathat Station.

The project is worth 53.4 billion baht.

The first trial run is expected to start next January for three months. Full service is expected to start later around June 2024, said Mr Sarawut.

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