Phuket Governor Tri Augkaradacha announced the winning design for the Phuket Exhibition and Convention Centre in Mai Khao
At a ceremony in Phuket Town on Saturday 26th March 2011, Phuket Governor Tri Augkaradacha announced the winning design for the 2.6 billion baht (US$86 million) Phuket Exhibition and Convention Centre in Mai Khao.
Shortlisted from three finalists, the concept by KAED 103 is in the shape of a turtle shell. However, the plans will be modified to incorporate some Sino-Portuguese architecture, a feature which some locals said was important to them.
Judges making the final decision included the president of the Association of Siamese Architects, the president of the Engineering Institute of Thailand and the president of the Thailand Conventions and Exhibitions Bureau.
When asked why they chose KAED103, Governor Tri remarked; “It was the one that matched the demands of Phuket people.”
KAED 103 were also preferred due to their superior level of relevant experience, having already designed the Queen Sirikit Convention Centre in Bangkok and the Muang Thong Thani Convention Centre in Pak Kret, Nonthaburi.
Muang Thong Thani Convention Centre is home to the famous Impact Arena; a 12,000 seat concert hall which has hosted shows by stars such as Michael Jackson, Kylie Minogue and The Rolling Stones.
However, it seems that the fate of the Phuket Exhibition and Convention Centre may rest in the hands of Thailand’s ruling Democrat Party.
Should the Democrat Party lose the Thai general elections in June this year, it remains unclear whether the Exhibition and Convention Centre would be built.
“I don’t know the other parties’ policies, but next term if we are still in the Government, I guarantee the project will continue. I expect the centre to be finished by the start of 2014,” said Thai Finance Minister, Korn Chatikavanij.
Planning will now move to the construction phase which is due to start in September although a construction company is yet to be decided upon.