February construction date for Siam Theatre site

Construction News

The property management office of Chulalongkorn University (CU) will start construction of a new building at the site of the burnt-out Siam Theatre next February, with work expected to take two years to complete.

CU recently finished demolishing the heavily damaged theatre and immediate retail space in Siam Square.

Estimates for renovating the nearly seven-rai plot were previously set at more than one billion baht. The redevelopment will see more floors and retail space.

Vice-president Permyot Kosolbhand said the university will set up a new committee to consider retail space allocations in the new building.

“We’ll consider former authorised retailers as prior potential tenants but also help those entrepreneurs who were genuinely affected but had sublet without authorisation,” he said.

CU has almost finished the process of verifying the status of retailers affected by the May arson attacks.

By next week, the university plans to move more than 200 retailers from temporary tents in Siam Square Sois 3 and 4 to new temporary retail lots nearby.

CU and the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) have since last month joined to impose new prohibitions on hawkers selling at night on the pavement along Rama I Road. The university plans to develop this area.

The university and Pathumwan district office informed stall operators about the measure in September. From October, male staff identified by their pink CU polo shirts have worked to control the prohibited areas.

Many of the vendors have complained that these men have threatened them, but Dr Permyot insists that the university strictly abides by a policy of non-violence.

CU said staff will continue to patrol until it is certain no hawkers will return.

The property management office said a recent survey showed pedestrians and Siam Square retailers were happy with the anti-hawking measure. Out of 400 pedestrians, 96.8% of expressed satisfaction, while 89.5% of 150 retailers said they were pleased.

CU and the BMA are offering the nighttime hawkers new retail space in Chatuchak Square, a building located opposite Chatuchak outdoor market.

Rent will be waived for three years, but tenants will have to pay electricity, water and cleaning charges of 100 baht a day, increasing by 20% each year for the remaining two years.

Source:  http://www.bangkokpost.com/business/economics/208033/february-construction-date-for-siam-theatre-site

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