BANGKOK, 4 July 2012 – The Transport Ministry is set to resume the construction of the suburban section of the Red Line electric train line, after almost 2 years of suspension.
Transport Minister Charupong Ruangsuwan said on Tuesday that the weekly Cabinet meeting has approved a budget of 29.82 billion baht for the construction of the Bangsue-Rangsit Red Line railway line.
Mr. Charupong said that the construction bidding of the suburban section of the electric train system has been opened since last December and the lowest bidder was the SU Joint Venture, which comprises Sino-Thai Engineering & Construction and Unique Engineering and Construction.
From the proposed cost of 34.65 billion baht, the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) has successfully negotiated it down to the final price, which the Cabinet has approved the budget for on Tuesday.
The Transport Minister stated that the completion of the pending electric train system will see a modern railway station with 22 tracks, which will help ease traffic congestion at 21 critical points and the crowdedness at the Hua Lamphong train station in Bangkok.
The Office of Transport and Traffic Policy and Planning Director-General Soithip Trisuddhi added that the SRT will notify Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), which is the financial supporter of the project, about the latest progress.
Mrs. Soithip expects the first construction contract to be signed within 2 weeks. She added that only after JICA has approved the content in the first contract will the SRT be able to sign the second contract.