Monorail – pie in the sky?



Some 4 years ago I wrote a letter concerning the problems of transport in Pattaya but as usual, blind eyes and deaf ears. We are still being pushed towards the Pattaya Sky-train idea. I can not understand what the obsession is with building this transport system up in the air. There are the immediate obvious troubles caused for the elderly and disabled even with moving stairways, lifts and stairs for the raised sections. The cost would be just crazy when the final figure is reached. Whilst the Bangkok version is very good it has caused something resembling cave life underneath in some places and added to the concrete jungle.

My feeling is things could be much simpler with a well thought out tram system that works for everybody. Basically it would run from Naklua, north to south to the end of Jomtien Beach with the tracks splitting from Dolphin roundabout to go via Beach Road and Second Road. Links would be Pattaya north, central, south and Thepprasit roads all going to 4 terminals on the Sukhumvit Road. These terminals would have park and ride facilities with free rides in exchange for the parking ticket up to a given number of hours. The baht buses would be reduced in number with jobs on the trams being offered first to those who gave up their vehicles.

Thailand is great at making or copying most things so put the talents to work and make replicas of famous trams all over the world: old styles from San Francisco, Blackpool UK, Paris, Shanghai, wherever. New styles could be futuristic: open, closed, short, stretched, it’s fun and endless.

For the centre of the city, (traffic could be limited to) delivery trucks at specific loading and unloading times and the good old motorbike and sidecar. Personal motorbikes and motorbike taxis OK. (As for) Cars, build some multi-story car-parks and make Beach Road and Second Road for permits only. Find a piece of ground and have Bike City where all motorbikes for hire can be off the streets and compete fairly with each other without telling tourists “you can’t park there” like they own the street.

My guess is we will still have no tram or mono-rail system in 5 years time which reminds me, what was that date again for Thappraya Road and Jomtien 2nd Road being completed?