Bangkok Skytrain extension opens

15 Aug 2011

The governor of Bangkok presided over the opening ceremony for the Bangkok Skytrain extension on Friday. The rite to inaugurate the five kilometre addition to the Sukhumvit line was timed to coincide with the 79th birthday of Her Majesty Queen Sirikit.  

The new section extends the line from On Nut to Bearing, and trains stop at Bang Chak, Punnawithee, Udomsuk and Bang Na en route. Work on the extension began nearly five years ago and the total cost has been estimated at 50 billion Baht.  

Passengers using the new extension until 2 January next year will be able to travel for free. From that date, people travelling on it will pay a flat rate of somewhere between 15 and 20 Baht, the exact figure has yet to be decided, per trip.  

At the inauguration, governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra said that Bangkok Mass Transit System Company officials hoped that up to 120,000 commuters would travel on the new sector of line every day. The company says that around 500,000 passengers use the Skytrain routes every day, with around 10 per cent less on the weekends.  

The Bangkok Skytrain network came into service in 1999 and, despite an initial shortage of passengers which was blamed on high ticket prices, has become an integral part of Bangkok’s urban transport network.

The Skytrain and the underground Mass Rapid Transit system (MRT), when it started service in 2004, have done a lot to alleviate the discomfort of commuting and travelling around the capital city.    

Tags: Bangkok Skytrain extension

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