The Don Mueang–Suvarnabhumi–U-Tapao high-speed railway, officially known as the High-Speed Rail Linking Three Airports Project, is in progress and expected to be completed by 2029, government deputy spokesperson Tipanan Sirichana said on Sunday.
Ms Tipanan said Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, as chair of the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) Committee, had expedited the construction of the project to ensure a modern, convenient, fast and seamless transport system linking the three airports.
The State Railaway of Thailand (SRT) and the EEC Committee have entered a contract with a private consortium to build the 220-kilometre railway at a cost of 224.54 billion baht and operate the system for 50 years. After the end of the 50-year concession, the property – worth about 300 billion baht – would be handed over to the state.
The railway, with the 1.435-metre standard gauge, will be based mainly on the existing airport rail link and SRT rail route. From the airport rail link, the railway will be extended on one side from Phaya Thai station to Don Mueang airport and on the other side from Lat Krabang station to Suvarnabhumi and U-tapao airports.
Trains will run at a maximum speed of 250 kilometres per hour. The entire route will span five provinces - Bangkok, Samut Prakan, Chon Buri, Rayong and Chachoengsao - with a total of nine stations: Don Mueang, Bang Sue, Makkasan, Suvarnabhumi, Chachoengsao, Chon Buri, Si Racha, Pattaya and U-tapao.
According to Ms Tipanan, the land for construction of the project between Suvarnabhumi and U-tapao was handed over to the private consortium in June 2022. The area between Phaya Thai and Don Mueang will be handed over to the concessionaire in October this year.
It is believed the entire project will be completed by 2029, she said.
"Apart from linking the three airports and serving as major infrastructure for the EEC, the high-speed railway is intended to attract more foreign investment and create about 100,000 jobs in the industrial sector. There will be smart cities along the rail route, which can be further connected with other parts of the Asean region," Ms Tipanan said.