Friday, August 25 was a day many motorists had been waiting for as the long haul Pattaya Klang tunnel finally opened for public use.
The grand opening ceremony to mark the occasion drew several senior public dignitaries including Akom Thermpitttayapaisit from the Ministry of Transportation, Pakaratorn Tienchai, the governor of Chonburi, and Pol. Maj. Gen. Anan Charoenchasri, the mayor of Pattaya.
Locals commuters will be more than aware that traffic snarl-ups have become a major issue in Pattaya in recent times and the underground tunnel is seen as a remedy to the many logjams created by vehicles pouring in and out the Pattaya Klang/Sukumvit Road intersection.
The 1,900-meter long tunnel has four lanes with each being 3.5 meters wide. There is a traffic island separating the lanes, with interior decorations and an ornamental dolphin installed as another landmark for the city. The security and safety system is fully packed, with air vents along the tunnel walls and cameras installed in case of any accidents.
The project reportedly cost 837.441 million baht and is deemed money well spent to provide greater convenience for road users and to solve future traffic congestion issues. It marks yet another major public works accomplishment for Pattaya – even if it comes after a long wait.