Narrow bridges

Two new bridges to boost trade and tourism between Thailand and Malaysia

The bridges will connect Sungai Kolok and Takbai districts in Narathiwat to the Malaysian state of Kelantan, government spokesman Ratchada Thanadirek said on Friday.

The project is part of the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) economic development plan.

The two new bridges over the Golok River were proposed by the then Deputy Prime Minister, General Prawit Wongsuwan, who is now Acting Prime Minister.

The 2nd Sungai Golok-Rantau Panjang Bridge with six traffic lanes will be built parallel to the existing bridge in Sungai Kolok district, which is too narrow for large vehicles and cannot be expanded.

The second new bridge will connect downtown Takbai to the Malaysian city of Pengkalan Kubor as part of an 11 kilometer road with 4 to 6 traffic lanes.

Prawit proposed that Malaysia design and build the first bridge. Talks are underway to decide who will be responsible for building the second bridge.

Malaysia recently agreed to forward the proposal to Cabinet, Ratchada said.

Meanwhile, it will send a task force to Thailand to study the construction of a road between the new Sadao checkpoint in Songkhla province and the Bukit Kayu Hitam checkpoint in Kedah state in Malaysia. in December.

“The government expects the new bridges to help promote cross-border trade and tourism in the southern region and contribute to the sustainable economic growth of local communities in the border provinces of the two countries,” Ratchada said.