Construction projects in "Neo Pattaya"

Butterworth-Kulim airport link planned, Line 2 East metro extension opens in Manila, land-reclamation for airport rail link in Bangkok, and more construction and transport news in Southeast Asia.

This week I’ve restarted the “Future Cities” series with a look at Pattaya, where I last visited in January 2019. I was on my way there in March 2020 until, well, you know what happens next. On that trip I was planning to do a report on the Eastern Economic Corridor, and then fly from U-Tapao Airport to Saigon with a newly-launched flight with VietJet Air. I made it as far as Bang Saen (the closest beach to Bangkok) before returning to Vietnam to ride out the coming Covid storm.

I prefer to have at least visited a city when doing these Future reports, so Pattaya is one I can do until I get to visit again. The city is trying to rebrand itself as “Neo Pattaya”, which I have listed why in the article. There is also talk of demolishing this abandoned tower, though given how things work here it might end up rivalling the Sathorn Unique Tower (the Ghost Tower of Bangkok).

Also this week I take a look at the Den Chai – Chiang Rai – Chiang Khong Railway. Chiang Khong is in Chiang Rai province, so it’s easier to call this the Chiang Rai railway. There hasn’t been a lot of news about it in the English media, but I am seeing more updates via the Southeast Asia Railways group on Facebook. Most railway attention in Thailand has been on the high-speed railway to Laos, and the 3-airport railway project. Fair enough, as they are both active. After years of delays, it looks like the Chiang Rai railway is happening. With a railway connecting Bangkok, could Chiang Rai finally rival Chiang Mai as an alternative northern city hub?

Latest Posts At Future Southeast Asia

Future Pattaya – Construction, infrastructure, and transport plans For Pattaya

Chiang Rai Railway

The Den Chai – Chiang Rai – Chiang Khong Railway is a proposed new railway in Northern Thailand. 

Updated Posts


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Ministry speeds up land-reclamation process for airport rail link


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Other News


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Indonesia’s newest economic zone seeks $17 billion investments

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Laos govt approves Bokeo-Boten expressway linking China, Thailand

Bokeo province is opposite Chiang Rai province in Thailand. If the Chiang Rai railway is ever built, this road is on a similar path to a railway that has been proposed to meet it.


Butterworth-Kulim airport link planned under blueprint

“A local authority in Penang has proposed a new rail line to connect Butterworth to the upcoming Kulim airport in the east as part of its proposed 2030 town planning blueprint revealed today for public feedback.”

Another potential airport rail link in Southeast Asia.


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“The president says he has a “win-win” relationship with Beijing but his critics aren’t so sure.”

Line 2 East metro extension opens in Manila


Scheme aimed at easing manpower crunch allows construction firms to bring in workers-in-training

“A temporary scheme allowing construction firms to bring in workers from China before their skills are certified has attracted over 200 applications since its launch in May.”


Bangkok's Red Line rail plans 'soft' August launch

“The Red Line rail project will commence a "soft" launch of its services on Aug 2 and will allow commuters free rides for three months, Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob says.”

Thailand to ease COVID-19 curbs on some construction projects


Hanoi 2nd metro route elevated tracks to be tested

Construction on second metro line to begin in late 2021

“Land acquisition, compensation payments and resettlement for affected households should be completed by the end of July so that construction on Ho Chi Minh City’s second metro line can begin, city officials have said.”

Transport ministry rejects 11 airport construction proposals