The concrete bridge linking Si Racha mainland with Koh Loi Island will be closed for two years for major repairs after it was found to be in poor and unsafe condition.
The closure of this small island and a popular tourist destination was disclosed by Si Racha city mayor Mr Tanee Ratananon after leading media representatives to inspect the condition of the bridge yesterday.
He said although the upper surface of the 500-metre long concrete bridge will look good, but survey underneath the bridge showed the bridge is in very poor condition.
Corrosion of embedded steels and iron rods could be seen on the concrete pillars of the bridge, as well as broken concrete surfaces, he said.
He recalled that the Department of Public Works, and Town and Country Planning had ordered the closure of the bridge in 2013 after having inspected it and found it was in bad condition.
However due to concern that traders on this 3-rai space island and tourists and locals would be affected, the closure was relaxed until today.
But now it was impossible to allow the use of the bridge for safety reason, it has to be closed for major repairs, he said.
He said official closure of the bridge will begin on June 3 for repairs for two years, or faster.
During the closure, the pier where tourists use to board ferries to Si Chang Island will be shifted to Pon Nayok pier temporarily, while parking spaces for tourist buses and cars will be arranged at parking facilities of the Sawang Prateep Dhammasatan Foundation, Ban Si Racha school and Sala Prachakom Community Office.
Appropriate locations are also being considered for traders to continue their businesses, he added.
Koh Loi rocky island hosts a Thai-Chinese temple and a viewing area for the impressive sunsets.
By Thai PBS