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Despite public and professional criticism, the BMA is bulldozing ahead with its Chao Phraya River Promenade. 

As the controversial Chao Phraya River Promenade comes ever closer to fruition, old communities along the river are living in fear of eviction. Among those potentially affected are Udom Khamking, 67, and Chalong Songbundit, 34, of Mittakham community, who work as divers hunting for sunken treasures in the Chao Phraya River. We speak to them about their unusual profession, which is still going strong after more than half a century. 

CPA handed its environmental impact study to the BMA on Sep 26 and construction is set to begin as soon as January. Time is ticking on the chance to put a stop to the controversial Chao Phraya River Promenade.
Wiman Phra Indra, Bangkok (left) and Crystal Island Tower, Moscow

Another week, another controversy engulfs Thai architecture. 

Trader Vic’s

This Dec 4-13, restaurants along the Chao Phraya River are rolling out special menus, promotions and food-focused events. 

Landscape architect Yossapol Boonsom, 38, launched the non-profit organization Friends of the River (FOR) in a bid to prevent construction of the Chao Phraya Riverside Promenade. This highly-divisive, B1.4 billion government project will see 14km of the river turned into a walkway and bike lane. Its detractors say not enough thought has gone into either the aesthetic or environmental consequences of such a massive construction project. Here, Yossapol discusses how the promenade could change Bangkok’s riverside.

The 7km-long project spanning both sides of the Chao Phraya River poses no risk to locals or the environment, the BMA says.

Photo by Panita Thiraphapong
Staying in the city next long, long weekend? Have a Bangkok staycation with our local's guide on where to go, what to eat and where to stay around Phra Nakhon-Rattanakosin.
The Chao Phraya River could be about to see a renaissance. Big new developments are both underway and moments from being given the BMA’s green light, including new water-borne transportation links, pedestrianized boardwalks and a shopping mall offering Paragon-levels of luxury retail. So, here’s how the Chao Phraya could look tomorrow. 
Graphic: Urban Design and Development Centre

Yannawa Riverwalk, an initiative by the Urban Design and Development Centre (UDDC), aims to bring Bangkokians closer to the Chao Phraya River.