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Flyovers are coming as work continues on Phuket's underpasses

Two New Phuket Flyovers to Tame Traffic at Holiday Island's Hot Spots

Sunday, May 3, 2015
PHUKET: The holiday island is to gain its first traffic flyovers, a senior Transport Department official declared yesterday in announcing a new deadline for the ban on motorcycles using the Phuket underpass.

The flyovers would cost 200 million baht and go at the Koh Kaew u-turn bottleneck and the airport road t-junction with Thepkasattri Road, said Deputy Transport Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith.

For years, Phuket's future planners have insisted that traffic construction on Phuket should all be underpasses so that the holiday island disguised the fact it was actually a Bangkok-style city.

The two flyovers break the mold.

Khun Arkhom also said that tenders were being sought for the 570-million baht Chalong Circle underpass and the 600-million baht underpass where Thepkasattri Road meets the bypass road.

Construction would begin as soon as contracts were signed, he said.

Khun Arkhom visited the underpass at the Tesco Lotus intersection on the bypass road and said construction was behind but still scheduled to be completed late this year and opened early next year.

He also announced May 15 as a deadline for motorcyclists who have continued to attempt to use the newly-opened Central Festival Phuket underpass despite a ban on two and three-wheel vehicles.

''Police will begin to impose 1000 baht fines to those who fail to obey the signage,'' he said. ''It's too dangerous to have motorcycles and sam laew motorcycles with sidecars using the underpass.''

A forager on a sam laew recently became the first crash victim in the underpass when a truck sideswiped his vehicle inside the underpass.

He was believed to be attempting a u-turn. Fortunately, his injuries were minor.


Comments have been disabled for this article.


Overpasses! Good news! They will hide partly the ugly 'condo-high' bill boards along the road. Wish they reconsider Chalong Circle as well, with all its's bill boards to hide by a fly over.

Posted by Kurt on May 3, 2015 08:28


60% off traffic are motorbikes , pay taxes and and like cars, very good planning!! the streets on the side have more accidents why? in and out coming traffic from all the companies ,changing strokes etc, thanks

Posted by donald on May 3, 2015 09:28


Hmmmm. They could do almost 6 flyovers for the cost of 2 tunnels. But why be logical. Not sure why we need and underpass at the ByPass and Thepkasattri Road. With 2-3 lanes turning right onto the ByPass, traffic never seems to back up much there.

Posted by Scudman on May 3, 2015 09:40


Just build a network of underground tunnels and bypasses around the bypasses.

Posted by Tbs on May 3, 2015 12:05


Chalong Circle has not any historical value, all buildings in a radius of 300 metres are old and ugly, many hidden by enormous high, wind catching, ugly bill boards. Build quick a flyover. That location in particular is always flooded when it rains more than 1 hour. A flyover can have more 'arms', more flexibility creative than a tunnel. Quicker and cheaper built. Do you agree?

Posted by Kurt on May 3, 2015 20:29

Editor Comment:

You mean, if it has any historical or traditional value, you are unaware of either.
This is not a beauty contest, Kurt. Nobody likes traffic. Nobody is a fan of flyovers.


With respect, mr Editor, is anybody a fan of the huge bill boards around Chalong Circle? I agree with you, nobody is a fan of traffic, but the traffic is there at Chalong circle. A limited underpass would not solve problems like at other traffic points on Phuket, because Chalong circle is a circle. Close to the sea, flooded around most of the time when it rains heavily. Who talks a bout a beauty contest, mr Editor? I not understand that like in your comment ( with respect)

Posted by Kurt on May 3, 2015 20:58

Editor Comment:

Your preference for a flyover is not supported by logic or engineering knowledge, Kurt. It falls into the category of ''I really haven't a clue, but I want to be published so I'll say something for the sake of saying it.'' I wish you would cease your desire to blurt and only comment on issues where you have some value to add. Having an opinion should not be confused with adding value. Most people do not make that mistake.


Actually I understood from your articles that Thai officials made it a bit of a beauty contest by seeing flyovers as a unsight thing for Phuket.
Seems now they start to change that view. Don't be surprised when Chalong Circle not get a underpass, but instead a flyover. And why not? It is not a beauty contest, right?

Posted by Kurt on May 3, 2015 21:07


I just wish we could have a proper integrated public transport system (starting with a proper bus network) instead of the insistence on slapping down more and more concrete. The more roads you build the more traffic will use it. I pray one day that the authorities will wake up and join the first world they so badly want to be in.

Posted by Discover Thainess on May 3, 2015 22:06


Those against underpass should understand that when you build an underpass it is possible later to built a flyover above which is not the case when you start by a flyover first.
Chalong Circle may have a skytrain and they will need to built above the road if they want it to go to Rawai.

Posted by Whistle-Blower on May 4, 2015 10:46

Editor Comment:

I am no road engineer or Rhodes Scholar but flyover actually seem to require more space than underpasses. They are certainly a whole lot uglier. A tram is what's being proposed for Phuket. Believe me, trams are a whole lot slower than a skytrain. Have a look at the scale of Bangkok's skytrain routes. There is no space for a skytrain on Phuket's existing roads. A tram will get you where you want to go, but three times as slowly.


Underpass and overpass construction and what needs to be built first is far from one size fits all.
Construction of any underpass is far less complicated than a flyover or overpass mainly due to traffic diversions, the equipment resources and engineering expertise required.
The construction of a flyover would not have any influence on whether or not an underpass could be constructed in future. In softer soils, the support columns will be drilled or excavated to depths where bearing strengths are predictable. Generally this would be 10's of meters and well below the depth of any future excavation so that these piers or mass foundations remain socked into the soil.
Where constructed in firm to hard soils, weathered rock or shales as long as any excavation didn't undermine the bearing material or excavate too close where the bearing material may fail in sheer, there should also not be any issues.
Of course, excavation of an underpass would have to fit between any two flyover supports as modifications after construction is almost impossible without demolition and redesign of any sections.
Flyovers can be constructed either insitu or prefabricated off site in modules where quality control can be maintained. This, however, requires large equipment and space around the site to enable placement.
When considering construction costs, it depends on what equipment and how much space around the site is available but as a rule, an underpass will generally be much cheaper, require less temporary traffic control, less heavy equipment and less engineering expertise no matter what soil conditions are encountered.

Posted by Manowar on May 4, 2015 18:42

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