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Bangkok’s Bold Move: Slowing Down to 50km/h for Safer Streets

Welcome to the bustling heart of Thailand – Bangkok! A city of vibrant street life, tantalizing food stalls, and… snail-paced traffic? Well, it might just become the new reality if the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has its way. In a bold move that could change the face of Bangkok’s traffic as we know it, the BMA is advocating for a new speed limit to be the talk of the town. Picture this: cruising down the iconic streets of inner Bangkok and its bustling residential areas… at a breezy 50km-per-hour. Sound intriguing? Let’s dive into the details.

Thaiphat Tanasombatkul, the visionary director-general of the BMA’s Traffic and Transportation Department, is spearheading this innovative initiative. The goal? To drastically reduce traffic accidents and make the roads a safer harbour for commuters, cyclists, and pedestrians alike. But, how exactly do they plan to bring this ambitious vision to life? Through a combination of savvy engineering, stringent law enforcement, and a splash of public awareness magic.

The BMA isn’t pulling these ideas out of thin air. They’ve joined forces with the esteemed minds at Chulalongkorn University to put Bangkok’s roads under the microscope. Utilizing the International Road Assessment Programme (iRAP) as their guide, they’ve uncovered that the current max speed of 80km per hour is nothing short of a high-speed invitation to danger. Shocking, right?

So, which roads are set to become the pioneers of this leisurely pace? Think of the glittering Yaowarat Road, with its dazzling array of street food glowing under the neon lights; the historic Banthat Thong, whispering tales of the city’s past; Phra Arthit, with its artistic buzz; the majestic Charoen Krung, a testament to Bangkok’s rich heritage; and the ever-lively Silom. These iconic corridors are among the 40 roads earmarked to embody this change, transforming into tranquil paths within the city’s heart and soul.

But Thaiphat and his team aren’t stopping with just a polite request. No, sir! They plan to roll out all the stops – from stern warning signs that bid a firm “slow down” to every motorist, to the ever-watchful eyes of speed cameras, ready to snap a memento of anyone too hurried to embrace the city’s new rhythm.

Imagine the beauty of it all – a city where the streets no longer echo with the frenzied rush of cars, but rather whisper the tales of careful commutes and leisurely drives. A city where safety isn’t just a statistic, but a tangible reality felt by every soul on the road. This isn’t just about slowing down; it’s about crafting a Bangkok that cherishes the safety and well-being of its inhabitants and travelers.

So, as the BMA awaits the green light from the Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB), one can’t help but wonder about the serene future that might just be on the horizon for Bangkok’s roads. A future where every journey through the city is not just a commute, but a blissful stroll amidst the hustle and bustle. And in this vision, Bangkok shines not just as the heart of Thailand, but as a beacon of urban safety and harmony. Isn’t it a future worth cruising slowly towards?


  1. RoadRacer February 12, 2024

    This is the most ridiculous idea I’ve heard. Bangkok’s traffic is already a nightmare, and now they want to make us crawl? No way this will improve safety.

    • EcoWanderer February 12, 2024

      Actually, slower speeds drastically reduce accident fatalities. It’s not just about the time it takes to get somewhere, but ensuring you actually get there safely. It’s a smart move by the BMA.

      • RoadRacer February 12, 2024

        Sure, but at what cost? It’ll take forever to get anywhere. Bangkok needs better public transportation, not slower roads.

    • CityPlanner101 February 12, 2024

      Evidence from other cities shows that reducing speed limits in urban areas positively affects road safety without significantly impacting commute times. Plus, it encourages alternative modes of transport.

  2. JaneDoe February 12, 2024

    As a cyclist, I’m all for it. I avoid some of these roads because they feel like death traps. Slower speeds might make drivers more aware of bikes and pedestrians.

    • FastTrack February 12, 2024

      More aware or not, bikes shouldn’t be on the same roads as cars. Separate lanes for bikes and pedestrians would be safer than slowing everyone down.

      • UrbanCyclist February 12, 2024

        Separate lanes would be ideal, but not always feasible. Slower speeds are a good step toward shared safety.

  3. StreetFoodLover February 12, 2024

    Won’t this just hurt local businesses, especially the food stalls in Yaowarat? People might avoid these areas to dodge the slow traffic.

    • LocalBizSupporter February 12, 2024

      On the contrary, slower traffic might encourage more foot traffic, which is good for these businesses. It’s easier and safer to explore the area when cars aren’t zooming past.

  4. TrafficGuru February 12, 2024

    Slower speeds are only part of the solution. What about improving public transportation and creating more pedestrian-only zones?

  5. NightOwl February 13, 2024

    Imagine Yaowarat Road with less noise and chaos because of slower cars. It might actually enhance the experience. I’m curious to see if this change will bring a new vibe to nightlife there.

  6. ConcernedParent February 13, 2024

    Anything that makes the streets safer for kids is a win in my book. Hoping this means fewer accidents and a more family-friendly Bangkok.

    • Skeptical February 13, 2024

      It’s a nice thought, but will slower speeds really stop the reckless driving that causes most accidents? Isn’t enforcement of existing laws more important?

      • ConcernedParent February 13, 2024

        Enforcement is crucial, but so is changing the culture around driving. This could be a step toward valuing safety over speed.

  7. TouristInLove February 13, 2024

    As someone who visits Bangkok often, I’m thrilled. Seeing the city at a slower pace sounds like a dream.

    • LocalGrump February 13, 2024

      Great for tourists maybe, but what about those of us who live and work here? Our daily grind just got longer.

  8. PolicyPundit February 13, 2024

    In theory, this sounds noble, but the success hinges on strict enforcement and public buy-in. Historically, Bangkok’s had issues with both.

  9. TechBro February 13, 2024

    Why not invest in smart traffic management systems instead? AI and machine learning could solve Bangkok’s traffic woes without hampering speed.

  10. CultureVulture February 13, 2024

    Slowing down in a fast-paced world might just make Bangkok a pioneer in valuing quality of life over efficiency. I love the progressive thinking here.

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