Will There Finally be a Road Around Koh Chang?
Could it really be happening this time? Could we finally be getting a road around the island?
Apparently so according to a report on Thai news website www.77kaoded.com. It’s all in Thai of course but here’s our effort to translate and share with you the main points of the article. Here’s the original.
They report that in a recent meeting of Koh Chang government heads the leaders of the 9 local “moo-barn” or areas of Koh Chang have agreed to the plan for building the required 10km of road between Bang Bao and Salak Phet to complete a circuit around Koh Chang.
In the meeting island official, Kamnan Wan Lung Kanornkun described that a partial circuit road that was part-built 10 years ago was abandoned when funds were instead poured into a road-building project to give road access to the Naval Battle Memorial down past Long Beach in the far Southeast of Koh Chang.
Whilst there now seems to be a strong desire from local government to complete the project there are apparently still some issues with regard to obtaining the necessary permissions to actually access the land.
Local landowner Khun Teera Salakphet owns land on the proposed route and has donated it to allow road construction. However, the proposed route also crosses land owned by the Koh Chang National Park and they have yet to approve the development.
But prominent local business owner Lieutenant General Preecha Wanarat has petitioned Thailand National Park Head Office in a letter dated December 19th, 2017 to argue the benefits of the project.
…and that’s where we are at the moment. So nothing is certain and the decision now seems to lie in the hands of the National Park but it seems like some kind of critical mass of support for the project has developed.
The benefits to business and tourism on the island are obvious. The drawbacks also. Native forest will have to be cleared for the road and the sleepy South-Eastern side of the island will likely face rapid development.
So what do you think? Should Koh Chang have a circuit road? Why not let us know below?