Orange Line work on course
Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob has assured that the eastern section of Bangkok's Orange Line, stretching from the Thailand Cultural Centre to Min Buri, will be ready by 2024 as planned.
He was speaking on Thursday after presiding over a ceremony to mark the start of the project's third tunnel boring machine -- running from Hua Mak to Ramkhamhaeng station -- which is expected to be completed by July.
When in operation, it is estimated that this section of the Orange Line will serve up to 400,000 passengers a day, helping save time and travel costs, and reduce the negative impact on the environment caused by using cars.
The first and second tunnel boring machines began tunneling last May, Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand governor Pakapong Sirikantaramas said.
The first boring machine was heading toward the Ramkhamhaeng station and is expected to reach it by June, he said.
The second machine is moving toward Hua Mak station and will reach there by April next year.
A fourth machine is scheduled to begin tunneling in May and will run from Hua Mak station to Klong Ban Ma station.
It is expected to complete its task by June next year.
Mr Saksayam said he has emphasised to the contractor the importance of ensuring that construction work on this project has a minimal impact on Bangkok's traffic.
As for concerns raised over the possible impact of the construction project on the environment, he said, the project is using an entirely closed construction system in order to prevent any negative impacts.