Bangkok’s Third Western Outer Ring Road project spurs investigation
27 March 2019
The State Audit Office (SAO) is spending a month examining a complaint from residents whose community is affected by the proposed construction of the third Western Outer Ring Road, according to SAO secretary-general Piya Luedetsakul.
A similar complaint was also filed with the Office of the Ombudsman by 34 people including representatives of the residents of the Prueksa Ville housing estate in tambon Bang Toey of Sam Phran district.
Apart from the Prueksa Ville residents, the other complainants came from other provinces from Samut Sakhon, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani and Ayutthaya. The coalition of complainants has consistently raised its objection to the proposed project, which forms part of the motorway. The Highways Department is responsible for the construction of the motorway, which will span 98 kilometres from Rama II Road to Ayutthaya province.
The residents insist they were not consulted about the planned project whose toll collection ramps are planned to be built right in the middle of the housing estate and farmland. They demanded the project be re-designed to keep the motorway away from residential communities.
Mr Piya said the SAO would act on the residents’ calls for a probe into the project’s finances and investment worthiness. He expects the probe to take about a month to complete. The ombudsman would be in charge of gathering basic facts about the issue, according to Mr Piya.
Chatchai Thesniyom, head of the Prueksa Ville residents, said environmental, engineering and economic impacts must be considered.
The residents petitioned the SAO because the project cuts through many residential areas that could have been avoided, putting an unnecessary financial strain on the government, which will have to cover the expropriation costs, according to Mr Chatchai.