Cambodia’s Prime Minister pushes for skytrain in Phnom Penh to meet the growing populace

Cambodia Construction News
A representative photo of a skytrain in Bangkok. Prime Minister Hun Manet meeting Cambodians in New York said that his government is conducting studies to introduce skytrain in Phnom Penh. KT/Pierre Roussel

Cambodia’s Prime Minister pushes for skytrain in Phnom Penh to meet the growing populace

Prime Minister Hun Manet said that the government has conducted studies on skytrain and subway train projects to be operated in Phnom Penh in addition to increasing road connectivity countrywide to meet the growing population in Cambodia.

Addressing an interactive session in New York City with over 2,500 Cambodians living in different states of the United States and Canada, Mr Hun Manet said that the government is “studying sky and subway train systems in the city” as a possible alternative, and that land trains “are no longer possible”.

Last week, Mr Hun Manet was on a visit to the United States to attend the 78th General Assembly of the United Nations (UNGA) at the UN headquarters in New York City.

Passengers at the Phnom Penh International Airport.
KT/Chor Sokunthea

“If you want to see all borders and provinces, you can see as now we have connected bridges and roads in all places. We will have more bridges and roads and we are studying sky and subway train systems in the city as land trains are no longer possible for these infrastructures on the land because it is full of houses and the population is rising,” he said.

Heang Sotheayuth, Spokesman and Director General of Technology and Public Relations of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT), told Khmer Times yesterday that he would provide detailed information on the projects later as he does not have enough on hand. “I need to find more information and do necessary verifications as it is related to policy frameworks and leaders’ vision,” Sotheayuth said.

However, former Senior Minister and Minister of MPWT Sun Chanthol said in late June this year that the ministry is examining the details of a proposal for an underground light rail transit project connecting from Phnom Penh to Techo Takhmao International Airport in the southern part of the city.

Chanthol said this during the launch of the MPWT Public Service Center in the Aeon Mall Meanchey. The event was attended by Tsuboya Masayuki, Managing Director of Aeon Mall – which provided space for MPWT centre to operate its service centre for free for the next five years – officials from public works and transport provincial departments and banking and financial institutions and over 500 participants.

Chanthol also said MPWT will seek private investors to study and discuss with relevant parties to set up stations at their locations including the Aeon Mall Meanchey which may be called Meanchey Station. “We are seeking cooperation with the mall authorities to determine the point of station ahead. I believe a train will arrive at this place soon… I am sure investors will put money into this project,” said Chanthol.

Former Prime Minister Hun Sen said that the government prioritised the subway train development in Phnom Penh as the mega transportation system and the subway transportation will be developed in Phnom Penh to facilitate commuters’ travels inside Phnom Penh as well as to the outskirts of the city to Kandal province.

Mr Hun Sen went on to add that the subway train is among other alternatives—metro or skytrain as studies on skytrain
in the city have been made by JICA, showing an estimated cost of $1.8 billion.