BANGKOK, Nov 12 (The Nation Thailand/ANN): A 5.5-billion-baht (RM770 million) plan to join up Bangkok’s water transport network with roads and rail stations and free the city from paralysing traffic congestion was unveiled by the government.
The W-Map project will develop 40 connecting points between boat stops and the capital’s roads and railways to boost water transport in Greater Bangkok, Transport and Traffic Policy and Planning Office (TPPO) chief Panya Chupanich said.
Bangkok was once dubbed “Venice of the East”, pointing to the potential of its extensive canal network as a transport system.
The first phase of the W-Map project will use a budget of 3.4 billion baht to develop 34 connections between water and other transport routes through 2027.
The second phase, running from 2028 to 2032, will build six more connections with a budget of 2.1 billion baht.
Panya said GPS and surveillance camera data will be used to integrate the water, road and rail networks, with the aim of solving Bangkok’s traffic problems.
The TPPO also plans to improve eight connecting piers, including the four Chao Phraya River ferry stops of Phra Nang Klao, Bang Po, Rajinee, and Sathorn.
The plan will be proposed to the Transport Ministry by March next year.
Meanwhile, park-and-ride facilities will be provided to connect the Bangkok- Suphanburi bus with Phra Nang Klao Bridge MRT station and Phra Nang Klao pier. - The Nation Thailand/ANN