Khao San Road gets spruce up
About 200 volunteers, soldiers and police on Wednesday joined a big cleaning effort along the "new Khao San Road", which has recently been renovated to serve as a street vending landmark in Bangkok.
The volunteers, working under His Majesty the King's social service projects, were on Wednesday greeted with a new 400-metre footpath which had been previously overcrowded with sellers. The previous overcrowding prompted City Hall to regulate the traders and beautify the area.
The cleanup was eyed to make Khao San Road, the world-renowned hub for backpackers, attractive to visitors worried about the Covid-19 outbreak as officials prepare to reopen it to visitors.
"It should have already been opened after renovations, but because of Covid-19, we decided to open it on July 1 or Aug 1," deputy Bangkok governor Sakoltee Phattiyakul said while inspecting the area.
The infrastructure and facilities, including 60-centimetre-high collapsible stainless railings, are ready for use. The barriers are aimed at separating the vending areas from traffic.
The footpaths have also been repaved.
Up to 250 registered sellers are at work designing their stalls to highlight their goods and services, which will be divided into different zones.
They will be allowed to sell from 12pm to midnight under the city's new rules for street vending.
But Bangkok governor Aswin Kwanmuang may consider extending the time by dividing it into two periods -- 9am-5pm and 6pm-12am -- in order to serve new vendors, Phra Nakhon district officials said.
City Hall has dolled out 48.4 million baht renovating Khao San Road.