Deputy Mayor Verawat Khakhay and city Public Works Department chief Wiwat Jirasripaitoon inspected the canal and bridge March 19 following complaints from residents passed along by acting Culture Minister Sonthaya Kunplome. The bridge, locals complained, was in horrible disrepair and both motorbikes and pedestrians risked plunging into the putrid water.
City officials say they will not only clear out the rubbish and sediment from the canal, but also order unlicensed structures built over the canal that block the water flow, to be demolished.
Verawat said the city will spend 2 million baht on the lighting and putting steel bars on both sides of the bridge. It will also bring in a backhoe to remove the enormous amount of rubbish from the canal, which sends water to the Pattaya wastewater treatment plant.
Neighbor Rak Chaithep, 47, said there are about 200 households along the banks of the canal and the number is continuously increasing. Some people encroach on public land and build their houses on wood above the canal, blocking water flow and exacerbating Pattaya’s flooding problem.
The city will check which houses have no title deeds and will proceed demolish structures blocking the canal.