Transport System in Rattanakosin Island Study Project held a seminar at Architect'58Fair
Thailand Cycling Club (TCC) supports a group of architects and town planners called the ‘Old Town Group’ and Silapakorn University’s Faculty of Architecture to conduct a ‘Transport System in Rattanakosin Island Study Project’ (Rattanakosin Island is an area where the centre of Bangkok around the Grand Palace used to be located when the city was constructed in 1782; it borders Chao Phraya River on the West and a dug canal on the East which turned this patch of land into an island.) The project was initiated in response to problems and conflicts/discontent emerging after Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) created a loop of totally 8 km long bike lanes on 12 streets in the island in order to come up with recommendations to help improve transportation there as a whole. On May 3, 2015, a seminar was organized to present this project in the Architect’s 58 Fair, the biggest annual fair by architects and town planners, at a convention centre in Muang Thong Thani, Pathum Thani Province, north of Bangkok
(From left to right: Mr.Chanthasit, Mr. Gawin, Mr. Natthawuth , Mr. Chatsiri and Mrs.Wimol on stage)
Speakers on stage were Mr. Chantharit Wirotesiri (a leader of the Old Town Group), Mr. Gawin Chutima (TCC Committee Member), Assistant Prof. Nattawuth Preeyawanit (Head of the Urban Community Town Design and Planning Department, Faculty of Architecture, Silapakorn University) with Mr. Chatsiri Thammarom (a member of the Old Town Group) and Mrs. Wimol Angsunanthawiwat (a Director of the Thai Urban Designers Association [TUDA]) acting as moderators.
Overlaying maps of land uses and transport to make analysis. A recommendation to turn many streets into one-way traffic for cars.
Mr. Chantharit used photo and video clips to provide background of this project, how the study was conducted which covered studies of land uses, forms and volumes of transport in the area at present. Outputs in form of maps were laid on each other in layers to make analysis and came up with seven-point major recommendations to improve transport system in the island that benefit all stakeholders, such as adjustment of bus routes, turning streets into one-way traffic and extension of bike lanes to connect with electric train stations whose construction would be completed in a few years, for example.
Mr. Gawin, on the other hand, provided background of TCC and its current directions of work that led to contracting the Old Town Group to conduct this study as TCC sees that cycling as a mode of transport is inseparable from walking and public transport in order to achieve sustainable transport that is a key factor of livable and sustainable city.
Assistant Prof. Preeyawuth added his view that ‘Bike Culture’ is a necessity if we are going to create a ‘Bike City’.
Mr. Paradech Payakkawichian, TUDA President, graciously opened the seminar and stayed to listen to all presentations and discussions.
TUDA President gave a souvenir to the TCC Committee Member
Streetscape Design Competition, where contestants are required to design transport on two streets, which is a part of this study, attracted a number of designs which were displayed in front of the seminar room.
Street Design Competition poster and a submitted design.
Some submitted designs to the Street Designs Competition were displayed in front of the seminar room.
Another seminar in the same room in the afternoon titled ‘Chao Phraya River, Canals and the City’ also provided information that improvement of water transport system in Bangkok would see introduction in a few years of newly designed river and canal passenger boats equipped with bicycle racks. Together with new harbours that also have bicycle racks, connections with land transport systems and public transport as a whole would be more efficient.
Reported by Gawin Chutima
TCC Committee Member