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  1. #1
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    Terrible Reviews For The New Airport Link.

    Reviews dont often come this bad. Especially from Thai Rath.

    ‘Mai Het Prathet Thai’ column, Thairath newspaper, August 25th, 2010
    Written by Lom Plian Thit
    Translated and rewritten by Wacharapol Isaranont
    Oh, Poor Airport Link

    BANGKOK: -- Finally, the Airport Rail Link is officially opened for commercial services on Monday (Aug 23), after seven years of construction. The high-speed trains, though, do not look as new as they should. In fact, they look as if they had been bought at a clearance sale. Even Chinese trains look far more dashing.

    The 28-kilometer rail route costs more than 30 billion baht in investment and has been subject to a vast amount of criticisms and negative press. Much of the grilling has been directed towards the project contractor, Sino-Thai Engineering and Construction.

    Despite its name, the Airport Rail Link isn't actually connected to any airport. According to the original plan, the route should have linked Don Muang Airport with Suvarnabhumi Airport, but ended up with the last stop only at Phaya Thai Station in Bangkok’s downtown area.

    What’s worse, the station does not even connect with a BTS station which is just a short distance away.

    The first day of commercial run was nothing but a mess. Commuters paid full fares, but could not check in their luggages because the Thai Airways counters were closed and no one knows when they will open.

    Hundreds of current Airport Rail Link staff are not full-time employees of the State Railway of Thailand (SRT). The railway authority hired Sasin Institute of Chulalongkorn University to recruit people and oversee salary payments on its behalf.

    It remains unknown which organization these employees are working for. Who will be held responsible when problems arise? How desperate it is to see how the SRT and Thai politicians wasted precious tax payers' money.

    Anyone who has been to Makkasan Station must have been upset about its poor condition that does not reflect the enormous investment put in. I cannot explain exactly how it looks. You’ve got to see it with your own eyes. Compared with Hong Kong’s Airport Rail Link, the difference are like heaven and hell.

    The road system around the Makkasan Station has not been expanded to accommodate more future traffic. Those who regularly pass through the area, especially during rush hours and on rainy days, would know well how terrible the traffic can be.

    Whoever is thinking about boarding the Airport Link train at the Makasan Station to Suvarnabhumi Airport should give it a second thought, because they could miss their flights. If anything, using the motorway could be a better choice.

    Moreover, travelers are not safe from hassles when they travel via the rail link to the international airport. They have to heave their luggages upstairs from the train station in order to check in at the airline counters on the forth floors.

    The Ministry of Transport has anticipated an operating loss in the first three years. But I doubt whether the SRT could really break even after the 3-yr period. Or the Airport Rail Link is destined to be in the sea of red ink forever just like our clunky rail services.


  2. #2
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    That's all smoke and noise. They just need to know how much of the budget each will get.

  3. #3
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    Hey a Thai journalist is pointing out corruption on a major project. In addition he is not afraid to criticize the whole setup. Good on him. Most time these kinds of things are swept under the grieng jai rug.

  4. #4
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    I believe the military were against it when they were in the government in 2007, they said it was another Thaksin pet project that went horribly wrong

    guess they were right,

  5. #5
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    ERR I'll stick to an air con taxi 30/40 mins Suk 20 area, approx 300bt all in.

  6. #6
    Nostradamus
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    [gloat]Told you so.[/gloat]

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smug Farang Bore View Post
    ERR I'll stick to an air con taxi 30/40 mins Suk 20 area, approx 300bt all in.
    That's why this is so silly, you still need a taxi to get to your hotel. Also, who is going to plan on using or rely on a train that does not run 24 hours. International flights often come in very late at night. The military apparently was right. I wonder who made out on this thing?

  8. #8
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    mm, not bad.

    We got as far as post #4 before Thaksin (a guy who hasn't set foot in the country for years) got the blame for a badly finished job.

    Wonder when Thais in authority today will bear the responsibilities of office, and if things don't look like they will work today - fix them.

    Thaksin-blame is becoming ritualised.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Ghost_Of_The_Moog
    We got as far as post #4 before Thaksin (a guy who hasn't set foot in the country for years) got the blame for a badly finished job. Wonder when Thais in authority today will bear the responsibilities of office, and if things don't look like they will work today - fix them. Thaksin-blame is becoming ritualised.
    Ya know what that makes a lot of sense. Nobody has stopped anything, nobody has questioned anything. Its just been passed on and passed on. No the end result cant be blamed on Toxin at all.

    But under whose administration was everything changed? From what it was supposed to be, to what it is? The point being sadly nothing will ever change here. Backwards is the order of the day. It really is sad that money takes precedence over a whole country. Nobody is in politics for Thailand. ah....... no need to rant.

  10. #10
    Thailand Expat terry57's Avatar
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    Remember when they opened the new airport, every body cried that it was shite, there wasn't enough shitters, not enough entry counters or shops. Friggin runways even developed problems.

    Jeez, the list went on but alls good now, Give them time to sort there shit out and the link will flourish.

    The Thais always fok things up but usually get things sorted but it does take a while though.
    Stroller is a Yerman faggot.

  11. #11
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    Very poor article with several inaccuracies. These types of projects always have problems immediately after opening, you can't expect everything to be perfect from day one. Similar criticism was made of the skytrain after opening "nobody will use it, too expensive..blah blah.." No matter what or where it was built people will always complain.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by madjbs
    Very poor article with several inaccuracies. These types of projects always have problems immediately after opening, you can't expect everything to be perfect from day one. Similar criticism was made of the skytrain after opening "nobody will use it, too expensive..blah blah.." No matter what or where it was built people will always complain.
    Finished over 15 months ago. Underwent 3 months of testing with free rides to the public. How the hell long does it take?

  13. #13
    Mid
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Ghost_Of_The_Moog
    Thaksin-blame is becoming ritualised.
    has , long time back as well

  14. #14
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    Underwent 3 months of testing with free rides to the public. How the hell long does it take?
    Yes and some of the problems mentioned in the article were rectified due to the 3 months of public testing. The information in the article is old the writer obviously has not used the service since the official opening.

  15. #15
    Thailand Expat terry57's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aging one View Post

    Finished over 15 months ago. Underwent 3 months of testing with free rides to the public. How the hell long does it take?


    Any ware between 1 year and a life time.

  16. #16
    Nostradamus
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    Its biggest problem is it is not connected to an extensive public transport infrastructure other than at Phaya Thai BTS which the express trains do not run to.

    It's a complete hassle and I can't see many people bothering with it given the cheapness and ease of taxis.

    Quote Originally Posted by madjbs
    Similar criticism was made of the skytrain after opening "nobody will use it, too expensive..blah blah.."
    The Skytrain is still in 36 Billion Baht debt is it not? I believe it turns a profit now though. It needs to be completed though. More lines are badly needed. We only got two of the proposed five or six IIRC.

    Money would have been far better spent on a full MRT network IMO.

  17. #17
    The Pikey Hunter
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    I used to fly into Shanghai regularly and always meant to use the maglev train.

    Problem was it only ran in daylight hours and my flight tended to arrive early evening and by the time I got through immigration, the last train had usually left.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by madjbs
    Yes and some of the problems mentioned in the article were rectified due to the 3 months of public testing. The information in the article is old the writer obviously has not used the service since the official opening.
    Yes he damn well has. The article had pictures of him. I live here its my home, I have kids in school. But this is real, this is corruption at its best.

    One more time the system has been able to operate for 15 months. They waited and tried it for 3. There are still major problems that have been reported. The question is how long until they are rectified?

    Building it to come in to the first floor when departures are on 4 was a mistake. The lack of elevator adds to it.

    Much more to come.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mid View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by The_Ghost_Of_The_Moog
    Thaksin-blame is becoming ritualised.
    has , long time back as well
    Well maybe they should start looking for new excuses for being half-assed.


    "I'm late into work because of Thaksin"

    "Did you photocopy those documents?"

    "No, the machine is broken, its Thaksin"

    "Did you get refills for the coffee machine......


    shrug

    ...let me guess, "Thaksin"?

    "Yeah, there's no coffee today."

  20. #20
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    Give a year and we will find out where the money REALLY went.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by the dogcatcher View Post
    Give a year and we will find out where the money REALLY went.
    Everyone knows that Thaksin stole everything at the airport.

    (Thats why there is no toilet paper at the new railway station. He took it)

    There's no actual evidence thats found to support this, but it is still a fact.

  22. #22
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    Fact.

    He probably controlled it from overseas.

  23. #23
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    Who originally own the worthless swamp land that the airport was built on and the AOT payed top dollar for?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by aging one
    Yes he damn well has. The article had pictures of him.
    Really, and how do you know exactly when they were taken? Why does he say you can't walk to the skytrain system, when there is a bridge between both the stations at Phayathai? He clearly states you have to go down to street level to transfer, which was only true during the test period!


    I live here its my home, I have kids in school.
    Well that is lovely, so do I

    But this is real, this is corruption at its best.
    More detail please, or are you just speculating?

  25. #25
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    The first week after opening of the metro i stay in Bangkok. My hotel was not far from mrt so i go fo a ride. After 10 minutes we must get out of the train. After 1 houre waiting i went upstairs to take a taxi. I heard that the metro for more then a month have trouble.
    So there is still hope

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