It’s fortunate for the Provincial Electricity Authority that Walking Street bars have been closed since April, because its disruptive underground-cabling project is months behind.
After running into underground obstacle after underground obstacle, PEA crews said Aug. 20 that they finally will complete building new manhole-covered service tunnels in October with hopes the entire project can be completed by January.
Thanu Surachaisikawith, head of the Provincial Electricity Authority’s power and cabling management division, said 37 of 39 manholes now have been dug over a one-kilometer distance. The last two at the mouth of the nightlife strip will take another six weeks.
After that, contractors must lay 1.6-meter-wide pipes that will hold power lines, electrical-transmission equipment and lines owned by local telephone, internet and cable television companies.
He blamed discrepancies between a survey of Walking Street’s underground geography and reality for the delay. The first 20 manholes went in without a problem, but when workers started No. 21, they found a half-meter-wide high-pressure water pipe that Pattaya had laid and didn’t put on the blueprints.
That pipe runs all the way to Soi 16, so work on the last 20 manholes was delayed,
The last step will be to install meter connections every 16 meters. Those meters hopefully will be connected to the main power grid in January, Thanu said.