Plan outlined to accommodate rally-affected commuters

Economy January 06, 2014 00:00

By The Nation

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The Transport Ministry has outlined the preparation, including the marking of park and ride venues to accommodate commuters living outside Bangkok.

Government agencies under the Transport Ministry convened Monday to prepare for the anti-government protesters' plan to siege Bangkok on January 13.
Transport Permanent Secretary Somchai Siriwathanachoke said that five inspectors will be in charge of transportation in five major zones, following the plan to siege 20 areas in the capital city.
As at least 1 million commuters may be affected by the "Bangkok Shutdown", park and ride stops will be put up to accommodate commuters from the North and South of Bangkok. 
Commuters can park their vehicles at the following venues: Don Mueang Airport, Mo Chit Bus Terminal, Future Park Rangsit, Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bitec Bangna, Central Rama II shopping centre, Big C at Thonburi Housing project, Big C Ratburana, The Mall Bangkhae, PATA Pinklao and Southern Train Terminal. Shuttle buses will provide free services, to connect them with mass transit routes.  It is also seeking help from Mega Bangna.
The ministry estimated that at least 1 million commuters would be affected, including 850,000 car owners. Traffic on 151 routes will be affected. While the rallies will affect 9 MRT stations and 13 BTS stations, they will also affect a port, 5 train stations, 2 Airport Rail Link stations, as well as 137 bus routes. 
It is also estimated that the rallies will affect 149 schools and universities, 12 embassies, 88 shopping centres, as well as 85 police stations and government offices. 
Somchai noted that if the situation turns out as bad as expected, the ministry's preparation should ease the impact by 50 per cent.