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Get smarter with Rama 2 road

Rama 2 bangkok one feb 28 2024

Rama II Road, intersecting with Highway 95, the primary southbound arterial route in the country, has once again made headlines. During the recent extended weekend, it faced criticism for deterring tourists heading to Hua Hin, a popular resort town. Reports on the “Paksabuy” Facebook page highlighted congestion on Rama II Road and the high cost of accommodation as key factors deterring travelers from visiting Hua Hin.

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin responded to the news by promising penalties for contractors responsible for traffic jams and health hazards on the road. He directed the Ministry of Transport to expedite construction work or face consequences. However, addressing the issue through quick fixes may not address the underlying systemic problems.

The Director-General of the Department of Highways (DoH), Sarawut Songsivilai, assured that construction activities would be halted during the upcoming Songkran Festival in April, urging motorists to be patient for another year until three elevated expressways are completed.

While this announcement may bring relief to local drivers, it raises questions about the DoH’s track record of delayed highway projects. Despite plans to expand the use of elevated highways in high-traffic areas, the implementation of these plans remains uncertain.

The development of Rama II Road, which commenced in 1970, has been ongoing with multiple construction zones and repairs causing continuous traffic disruptions and safety hazards. Incidents of accidents and fatalities related to construction work underscore the urgent need for improved safety standards.

The lack of coordination between provincial and local administrations has resulted in numerous construction projects along Rama II Road without a clear overview of their total number or completion timeline. The proposal for a special committee to oversee these projects, ensure coordination, and enhance safety standards has not gained traction with policymakers.

The continuous expansion of Rama II Road without sustainable transport planning has exacerbated congestion issues over the past five decades. While road development is essential, Thailand’s transport challenges highlight the need to consider more eco-friendly and sustainable transport alternatives. With the absence of a high-speed southbound train, investments in rail infrastructure could offer a more efficient and environmentally friendly solution to alleviate congestion on Rama II Road and improve overall transportation in the region.

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