Pattaya launches study into tram system

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Deputy City Manager Sutham Petchket (right) chairs a meeting to launch a formal feasibility study of using electric trams as part of the city’s efforts to improve mass transit.
Deputy City Manager Sutham Petchket (right) chairs a meeting to launch a formal feasibility study of using electric trams as part of the city’s efforts to improve mass transit.

Pattaya has launched a formal feasibility study of using electric trams as part of the city’s efforts to improve mass transit.

Deputy City Manager Sutham Petchket chaired the Jan. 10 meeting of local and regional transportation officials and Sumet Piriyawat of Burapa University’s Engineering Faculty who is working as an advisor on the project to the Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand.

The go-ahead for the feasibility study was given Dec. 20 and now Pattaya will hold a series of public meetings to gauge the cost, design, environmental impact and operational aspects of a tram system.

In June, Thammasat University researchers tested electric tram cars in Pattaya. They ran the rubber-wheeled trollies on four routes from Naklua to Jomtien Beach.

Pattaya officials in 2016 proposed that a light-rail or tram system be built, with variations on the plan calling for a loop between North and South Pattaya on Beach and Second roads, or just a single track on one of those streets. The tram system is based on one already being built in Khon Kaen.

The Pattaya test, funded by the National Science and Technology Development Agency, was designed to collect data for later analysis of capacity, route planning and economic benefits.

The next meeting will give local business leaders a chance to give their input on the tram plan. (PCPR)