Opposition to monorail project leads to street protest

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Dozens of Pattaya residents took to the streets in South Pattaya last week to protest the city’s proposed monorail project.

The protesters, calling themselves the People Power group, gathered under the 3rd Road overpass on Wednesday, October 27, wearing t-shirts and holding signs that read “People of Pattaya don’t want the monorail”. The gist of their protest was that the proposed monorail would destroy the natural scenery, create traffic problems, and have a negative financial effect on local businesses.

The group also claims that it is just not needed, as there are plenty of transportation choices already in place that are more suitable for a seaside tourist resort.

Rattana Ongsombat, one of the leaders, said not enough people know about the project and the effect it will have on Pattaya.  She said that at the last meeting with city officials, the prevailing attitude from the local citizens was negative, but that these opinions seemed to be ignored as the city decided to continue planning.

Pattaya citizens take to the streets in South Pattaya to protest the city’s proposed monorail project.

Rattana was adamant that most Pattaya citizens don’t want the monorail.

The protest march started at the 3rd Road overpass in South Pattaya and continued up 2nd Road all the way to the Dolphin Roundabout in North Pattaya, distributing leaflets along the way.

The city’s propose monorail, or sky train, project would have two lines operating.  The first would start at City Hall on North Road, take a left at the Dolphin Roundabout onto 2nd Road, and continue all the way to the 3rd Road overpass and onto Bali Hai Pier.  5 stations would be built, one each at City Hall, Central Center Pattaya (Big C in North Pattaya), the Central Festival Pattaya Beach, Chaimongkol Temple in South Pattaya, and Bali Hai Pier in South Pattaya.

The second line would also start at City Hall, but travel up North Pattaya Road to Sukhumvit Road, and end on Soi Chaiyapornwithi or Soi Nongprue in East Pattaya. This line would have 4 stations, one each at City Hall, Rung Ruang Bus Station, Bangkok Pattaya Hospital, and the Maintenance Center on Soi Chaiyapornwithi.

Combined, the two lines would cover a distance of 10.6 km.