The Assistant Governor said that MEA has been consistently converting the power lines from overhead to underground. Looking back on the success in 2017, MEA collaborated with the relevant agencies to lay the wires underground and remove the power poles on Phaholyothin Road, Phayathai Road, and recently Sukhumvit Road, where MEA launched as a New Year gift for 2018, a total length of more than 23 kilometers. The latest operations in 2018, MEA is moving ahead with additional routes. Currently the project has been completed on Phitsanulok Road (Phanitchayakarn Intersection to Yommarat Intersection) and Sri Ayutthaya Road (Phayathai Intersection to Mo Leng Intersection) while accelerating two further routes: Rama I Road (Pathumwan Intersection to Kasat Suek Bridge), a distance of 1.5 km, and Ratchaprarop Road (Pratunam Intersection to Railroad Crossing), a distance of 0.6 km, where the switching from overhead power line system to underground system is underway and more than 95% of the demolition of some electric poles is taking place for the happiness of all Thais to enjoy Songkran Festival in the downtown safely with a more beautiful environment and is due to be completed by this April.
All 4 routes of the underground power project are regarded as the important areas for Thai economy and tourism. There are landmarks such as the National Stadium, the Royal Turf Club of Thailand under the Royal Patronage (Nang Loeng Racecourse) and several large shopping malls. The overhead power line to underground cable project will create more stability for the power system and reduce the risk of damage to the electrical equipment or power interruption caused by wind storms or road accidents. It also helps solve the problem of tangled telecommunications lines and makes the surrounding areas more beautiful enhancing the tourism business.
In the construction phase, MEA has been operating since March 2017 and is scheduled to be completed by April 2018 with a number of processes including design, planning, construction of manholes and conduits, installation of medium voltage underground lines, construction of low voltage conduits on sidewalks, construction of telecommunications conduits, switching the power distribution system from overhead to underground and connecting to consumers, and demolition of telecommunications lines, overhead power lines and electric poles. Those poles will be provided to the Bangkok Metropolitan Authority and the Royal Thai Navy for the prevention of coastal erosion along Bang Khun Thian coastline in bangkok and Phra Chulachomklao Fort in Samut Prakarn Province. The target is to deliver 15,000 electric poles by 2023.
MEA’s power line conversion project covers a total distance of 214.6 kilometers and is due to be finished by 2021. Currently the project has completed a distance of 43.5 km or 20.3% while the areas under construction covers a distance of 171.1 km or 79.7%. However, in 2018, MEA plans to expand the project to Wireless Road, one of the most important economic areas, and also considers other significant routes.