City eyes reservoir, pumps to improve flood-control infrastructure

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Pattaya hopes to dig a new reservoir in Huay Yai and install two large pumps on Sukhumvit Road to prevent a repeat of last month’s record flooding.

Called before the Pattaya City Council to outline what the city is doing to prevent future floods, Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome said the administration wants to invest 400 million baht on a new lake in the Kaemling neighborhood to receive water from the east side of Pattaya, where Sept. 11 rainfall turned many streets into whitewater rapids.

Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome explains the city’s proposed plan to battle flooding. Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome explains the city’s proposed plan to battle flooding.

Itthiphol defended the city’s current flood-control infrastructure, claiming the city was largely back to normal “in a few hours” following the monsoon and flood, which dumped most water on the city in a decade.

In addition to two pumps for Sukhumvit, which was closed by more than a meter of water, the city hopes to dig more canals and install 10 more pumps in low-lying areas, Itthiphol said.

Most of the improvements, however, wouldn’t happen until at least after 2013 as part of a Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration proposal to spend up to 15 billion baht to improve the Pattaya area. None of that money has yet been approved, however.

One of the DASTA proposals, Itthiphol said, would be to grade correction along Pattaya Beach, where the trees and promenade sit higher than small sois feeding Beach Road, causing water to back up.

Another 580 million baht project calls for flood-control canals to be built along the city’s railroad tracks to clear water from Nongprue and Nong Plalai.