Khao San Road to reopen fully after B48m facelift
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Khao San Road to reopen fully after B48m facelift

Khao San Road, one of Bangkok's most famous tourist thoroughfares, is set to reopen fully next month after undergoing a major facelift during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Under a new space management plan, a total of 480 street vendors will be allowed to trade every day in two seven-hour shifts, from 9am-4pm and 5pm-midnight.

They will have to set up their stalls in designated areas 16 metres wide and over 400 metres on each side of the road, according to a report revealed at a meeting in Phra Nakhon district yesterday that was attended by Bangkok governor Aswin Kwanmuang and other executives.

The meeting discussed how the busy road would reopen after being closed for several months. Only a few vendors have so far returned to work amid the severe downturn caused by the borders being shut to foreign tourists.

Under the new rules each stall will be 1.5 metres wide and two metres long, with 240 street vendors will be allowed to work per shift.

Most of the stalls will sell general products and products from the One Tambon One Product project; the rest will sell food and drinks. The governor announced that sub-leasing and selling pirated products were forbidden and would incur hefty penalties. Tents and vendors' stalls must also be clean and tidy.

The road and footpaths are now on the same level, gutters connected to the main drainage system have been constructed on both sides of the road and there is a designated space for emergency use, such as a parking space for fire trucks.

City Hall has splashed out 48.4 million baht renovating Khao San Road over 120 days, from Jan 30 until May 18. A total of 280 street vendors, including news ones, have met the district's criteria and will be allowed to trade.

A big clean-up was arranged in May along the "New Khao San Road", whose facelift is intended to mark it out as a landmark for visitors to Bangkok seeking traditional Thai-style streetside shopping. It will also be promoted as a safe place to go for those worried about Covid-19.

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