Plans for the new Airport Link to Suwanabumi

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I just happened to be at the Hualamphong Train station today (after a short visit to pick up some of my company's red tape documents from a government office nearby) and I decided to stroll through the terminal. This train station is always packed full of people loading, unloading, or just sitting around waiting.

I noticed today, though, that they have a new exhibit up in the middle of the main waiting area. It gives some updates on the new Airport Train that is being built out to the new airport at Suwannabumi. The line is being built by the State Railways of Thailand, and so they wanted to toot their horns a bit about what a great train it's going to be.

I am pretty excited about this train as well, since there will be a station a very short taxi ride from my house. It will definitely make getting out to the airport a lot easier, once it starts operations next year. And good news for tourists to Bangkok, the line will connect with the Skytrain at Phayathai station. So getting from the airport on the outskirts of town to downtown Bangkok will just be a quick train ride away.

And even more exciting, a very ambitious map on display showed the SRT's plans. Basically they have mapped out two lines -- one North-South and one East-West -- to cut through the middle of Bangkok. The Airport Link is the East line. But eventually (according to the map) it will go west all the way to Nakorn Pathom province. The North-South line will stretch from Ayutthaya in the North, past the old but newly reopened Don Mueang airport, and go all the way to Mahachai near the coast of the Gulf of Thailand. SRT already owns most of the land to make this happen, so I hope that it will eventually come to pass.

But in 2007, the Suwannabumi Airport line is a reality and is currently under construction. A few days ago, 2bangkok linked to a few pictures from the design drawings for this new line. I noticed that the exact same photos are on display at Hualamphong now. Here are my favorite links:

It looks like the closest station to me will be the Ramkamhaeng Station. But it's not nearly as cool looking as the main terminal at Makkasan. The entire system map (in Thai, but you can get the idea) shows two lines -- one local line with eight stations and one express with just two (Makkasan and Airport). Very cool!

(If you can read Thai, you can see more information about the airport train -- both design drawings and construction updates -- from the Airport Rail Link website)

2 Comments

I, too, am very excited about this new line. It looks like in another 5-10 years, Khrungthep will have a well integrated and fully functioning rail transit system. Now if we could just replace the buses with natural gas or electic, then the air might really get cleaned up!

Yup. Although the realist in me would say that integrated transit system is probably closer to 10 years away than 5. And yes, I keep dreaming of a day where tuk-tuks are banned in Bangkok and the busses don't belch black smoke. Maybe someday...

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This page contains a single entry by Stuart published on March 30, 2007 2:25 PM.

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