Throw open Phuket tram bidding, urges PM

Throw open Phuket tram bidding, urges PM

The tram project for Phuket (Picture from MRTA)
The tram project for Phuket (Picture from MRTA)

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has stressed the importance of making the bidding for the planned 35 billion baht tram system in Phuket as universal as possible, the Mass Rapid Transit Authority said on Wednesday.

Gen Prayut made the remark during his recent visit to Phuket to observe progress in the project to construct a 41.7 kilometre tram route from Phuket International Airport to Chalong intersection, said MRTA governor Pakapong Sirikantaramas.

It came after the PM was briefed on the MRTA's decision to adjust the design to avoid adverse impacts on traffic, said Mr Pakapong. The design adjustment, however, will result in a 10% rise in funding, or about 2 billion baht, he said.

In response to the PM’s order, the MRTA is now speeding up work on the design and working out a clearer investment plan for the project before submitting them to the government’s committee on public-private partnership (PPP) investment policy and then cabinet.

The MRTA expects the design and investment plan to be approved by the cabinet late this year, he said.

Aside from the Phuket tram project, the 100 billion baht southern Purple Line (Tao Poon-Ratburana) and the 200 billion baht western Orange Line (Thailand Cultural Centre-Bang Khun Non) will be submitted to cabinet for approval as well, he said.

The Yellow Line extension from Phahon Yothin to Ratchadaphisek, however, still doesn’t have an exact timeframe for implementation as there still are too many loose ends to tie up, he said.

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