New transport routes to ferry spectators to SEA Games venues

Posted by samakomlao Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Morning Market bus station will serve as a transport hub during the SEA Games.

The Vientiane Public Works and Transport Department is opening up six new routes to transport spectators to the various venues where the SEA Games events will be played out.

Their destinations include the National Stadium, Lao-ITECC, the National University of Laos' Dongdok campus and Don Chan Palace hotel, according to the department's Deputy Director, Mr Chanxay Vinavong.

Firstly, 21 buses will ply the route from the Morning Market bus station to the National Stadium, via the Patuxay Monument and Donnoun village, with one departing every five minutes.

Another 22 buses will run from the Morning Market bus station via Beungkhayong and Salakham villages to the Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge, with one departing every 15 minutes.

A third route takes passengers from the Morning Market to Lao-ITECC through Naxay village and That Luang Market.

Three battery-powered shuttle buses and 10 pick-ups will run from the Morning Market to the Don Chan Palace hotel via the National Culture Hall and Pakpasak Technical College.

Another route runs from the National University of Laos' Dongdok campus to the National Stadium at Km 16.

The sixth route has buses running from the Friendship Bridge to the National Stadium.

“We already have nine regular transport routes in operation, which all depart from the Morning Market bus station,” said Mr Chanxay.

The first of these runs to the Friendship Bridge along Thadeua Road through Beungkhayong and Suanmone villages.

Two buses run to the Dongdok campus and 10 battery buses run to the Patuxay Monument and the Ministry of National Defence out to Km 9.

A third route takes passengers to Tha-ngone.

Another route goes along Phontong Road to Dongdok via the Chao Anouvong Sports Stadium, Thongkhankham Market and the Friendship Hospital.

Buses also run to Nongteng village via the National Culture Hall, Wattay, Sikhay and Nongniew villages.

Another route goes to Dongkhamxang village via That Luang Market and Nonkhor village.

The seventh route runs to Donpamay village via Dongpalane, Phonthan and the Polytechnical College, the eighth goes to Thongpong village via the National Culture Hall, Wattay, Sikhay and Nongneiw villages, and the ninth goes to Km 9.

Mr Chanxay said the department has been working with the transport sector to arrange for companies and individuals to contribute vehicles to the temporary transport network.

He believes about 37 buses, with 35-45 seats each, along with 16 more vehicles will be enough to transport spectators to and from the various SEA Games venues.

So far 49 buses, including 13 battery-powered shuttle buses, 124 minibuses, 131 taxis, 500 tuk-tuks and 60 pick-ups are confirmed.

“For the opening and closing ceremonies we need 15 buses with 45 seats, and 20 pick-ups. We plan that every three minutes two vehicles will depart the Morning Market for the National Stadium,” he said.

Mr Chanxay plans to have 100 minibuses, 45 taxis, 50 pick-ups and 70 tuk-tuks running from the Friendship Bridge to the city centre.

From Wattay International Airport, he anticipates 30 minibuses and 45 taxis will be needed to transport spectators.

Spectators from the provinces are also being catered for, with 41 vehicles travelling from the northern provinces and 42 from the southern provinces.

The department is working with the transport sector to prepare vehicles for transport and rent, to make sure there are sufficient available.

All the vehicles to be used must be of good quality, mechanically sound, have good paintwork and must be clean. Every vehicle will bear the SEA Games logo.

The department will also check that drivers are qualified and experienced, to prevent the risk of an accident.

The department will continue to work with the SEA Games security, traffic and marketing committees to supervise routes and parking areas to ease congestion.

“As far as transport prices are concerned we will try to make them fair and will not take this opportunity to raise prices,” said Mr Chanxay.

This is the first report of its kind from the Public Works and Transport Department, agreed to by the Mayor of Vientiane. If more information becomes available, the department will make it known to the public.

By Khamphone Syvongxay

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