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Pattaya’s Jomtien Beach Businesses Battle One-Way Traffic Woes Amid Drainage Project Delays

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Welcome to the bustling city of Pattaya, a place renowned for its vibrant nightlife, pristine beaches, and, recently, a rather contentious one-way traffic system along the picturesque Jomtien Beach. This new traffic arrangement has stirred up quite the whirlwind of reactions, especially from the local business community. Restaurants, cafés, and even the soothing massage shops that line this coastal haven have found themselves in the eye of this storm, resulting in a tale that’s as intriguing as it is tumultuous.

The root of this turbulence? An ambitious initiative by Pattaya City to streamline underground drainage works, essential for weathering the torrential spells the rainy season unfailingly brings. While the intentions behind this project were undoubtedly noble, the implementation of a one-way traffic system ahead of actual construction work has left many scratching their heads—and even more, fretting over their livelihoods.

The businesses dotting Jomtien Beach, once bustling hubs of activity, claim the new traffic system has thrown a spanner in the works. By causing significant congestion, it has seemingly erected an invisible barrier deterring both locals and tourists from gracing the area with their presence. And with the anticipated start of the drainage project yet to materialize, the question on everyone’s lips is, “Why now?”

In a spirited response, at least 200 businesses rallied together, their chorus of concerns finding an audience in Kritsana Bunsawat, the deputy mayor of Pattaya, and, notably, a fellow entrepreneur along the very street in question. The gathering wasn’t just a meeting; it was a manifest expression of a community’s plea for redress and a testament to the solidarity amongst Pattaya’s business owners.

The contentious traffic system, which took effect on March 1, reshaped a 3.7-kilometer stretch of road into a one-way street, starting from the Dong Tan curve and stretching all the way to the Chaiyaphruek intersection. This was all in preparation for a drainage overhaul that’s pitched to be a 500 million baht endeavor expected to span 19 painstaking months. However, amidst the clamor, a silver lining appeared with whispers of the builder proposing an expedited timeline, potentially alleviating the traffic woes sooner than anticipated. The city now waits with bated breath for the mayor’s approval.

Deputy Mayor Kritsana’s empathy was palpable as he acknowledged the plight of the businesses along Jomtien Beach. It was an acknowledgment of a stark reality: the change in traffic flow had not just tampered with the area’s vibrancy but had pulled at the very threads of the community’s economic fabric. The impact was more profound than anticipated, driving families, the heart and soul of Pattaya’s holidaymaking crowd, to seek leisure elsewhere.

Amidst this backdrop of uncertainty and resilience, there lies a shared hope amongst the businesses—a plea for the suspension of the one-way edict until the drainage works truly begin. Further, they unite in a call for compensation, seeking redress for the tumult that has, quite undesirably, redefined their day-to-day life.

This saga of Jomtien Beach is more than a story of infrastructure and urban planning. It’s a narrative about community, about resilience, and about the unexpected journeys we find ourselves on. As Pattaya navigates these turbulent waters, the spirit of its people—a blend of tenacity and hope—shines as a beacon for what’s possible when a community stands united. Here’s to hoping that the winding roads of Jomtien Beach lead to brighter, less congested horizons.


  1. JennyWren March 20, 2024

    This whole situation highlights how often these big projects fail to consider the human element. It’s not just about improving infrastructure; it’s about understanding the impact on local lives and livelihoods.

    • UrbanPlanner101 March 20, 2024

      While the human element is important, we must also consider the long-term benefits. Improved drainage could prevent catastrophic flooding in the future, which would ultimately benefit everyone, including businesses.

      • JennyWren March 20, 2024

        I agree that prevention is key, but there’s got to be a better way to manage these transitions. Communication and compensation for affected businesses should be part of the project from the beginning.

    • LocalJoe March 20, 2024

      Totally with Jenny here. My cousin owns a shop along Jomtien and it’s been a ghost town since the one-way system started. Long-term plans are great but folks are hurting now.

  2. SkepticalCitizen March 20, 2024

    Anyone else think this ‘expedited timeline’ is just a way to quell the backlash but won’t actually come to fruition? Seen it too many times.

    • OptimistRay March 20, 2024

      There’s always skepticism with government projects, but sometimes they do follow through. Keeping a positive outlook can help us weather the tough times more easily.

  3. BeachLover March 20, 2024

    Why is it always tourism and business that suffers in the name of ‘development’? There’s got to be a balance or soon there will be no charm left in places like Pattaya.

    • RealistRick March 20, 2024

      Charm doesn’t prevent floods. The city is thinking about the future. Can’t have tourism if the whole place is underwater.

  4. TravelBug March 20, 2024

    Visited Pattaya last year and loved Jomtien Beach. Sad to hear about this chaos. These infrastructural projects need better planning and execution.

  5. EcoWarrior March 21, 2024

    Everyone’s talking about business and infrastructure, but what about the environmental impact? These projects can cause significant disruptions to the local ecosystem.

    • TechieTom March 21, 2024

      The environmental angle is important, but the project is about installing better drainage, which in theory should benefit the environment by managing stormwater more efficiently.

  6. PattayaNative March 21, 2024

    As a local, I see how these changes cause inconvenience, but we’re also used to adapting. Pattaya has always evolved, and we’ll get through this too.

  7. DisgruntledDriver March 21, 2024

    Driving in Pattaya has become a nightmare! This one-way system is confusing and causes more pollution with all the extra driving. Short-sighted solution, if you ask me.

    • CalmCommuter March 21, 2024

      It’s a hassle, but isn’t it worth enduring some inconvenience now for better infrastructure later? Patience is key.

      • DisgruntledDriver March 21, 2024

        Easy for you to say if you’re not spending hours extra in traffic. There’s a difference between patience and practicality.

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