Soi Siam Country Club residents thought they had it bad before. And then it rained hard.
The street, in shambles due to long-delayed reconstruction, became a mud-wrestling venue July 11 after heavy storms hit Pattaya.
Homes and shops were flooded with muddy runoff and navigating the devastation proved nearly impossible.
A motorbike repairman said his store located right near a major dig site was hit hard. Water backs up in the dug-up road and flows back into his shop.
Worse, the overflow rushes from his store into homes of nearby residents and takes hours to drain.
Roadwork, detours and inconvenience related to installation of new drainage pipes and resurfacing of the road began Jan. 25, 2016 and was supposed to be completed April 4 this year. But in May, Nongprue Mayor Mai Chaiyanit said the construction had been halted indefinitely due to heavy rain and flooding. Completion was estimated at year-end.
Following the latest round of complaints from outraged residents, Nongprue Mayor Mai Chaiyanit said July 17 that the completion date was moved up to October. Given that that month has the heaviest rain of the season – and that work already was delayed due to weather – residents remain skeptical.
At the hastily called press session, Mai pleaded for more understanding from those affected, assuring them that the long-term benefit – that future flooding will be alleviated – was worth the current inconvenience.
He explained that the job is now split into two phases, each with their own problems.
In the first case, a 1.5-meter-wide drainage tunnel is being installed under the road near Wanasin Market. However, there is both a 50-millimeter water line and underground electricity cable that must be moved. Those are the reason for the delay, he said.
In the second phase, near SP Village, the main sewage pipeline to Pattaya is an obstacle that must be moved. He said the sub-district is in communication with Pattaya City Hall to resolve the issue and get construction restarted.
Mai said officials understand the problems that Soi Siam Country Club locals are facing and are working diligently to create detours and temporary fixes to alleviate the hardships.
Meanwhile, photos show construction is raising the height of the road to be above the threshold of homes and shops lining the street, as they have done all over town. This keeps the roads from flooding, but redirects the floodwaters into lower lying houses and shops.