When three become one. 

Three of northern Bangkok's most-loved parks—Chatuchak, Queen Sirikit and Wachirabenchathat—are set to merge into one "mega park" in honor of the late King Rama 9. the Bangkok Post reports

The first phase of Utthayan Suan Chatuchak is due to open in August, with the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) slating the entire project for completion by 2020. 

According to the Post, the project was initiated by HM the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej way back in 2001 to meet demand for more green space in the area, but has faced many stumbling blocks ever since. 

It wasn't until 2016 that the project got back on track when Bangkok governor Aswin Kwanmuang called on a simple design for combining the three parks that didn't require the removal of any of the trees.

When complete, Utthayan Suan Chatuchak will be the largest park in town, covering a total 700 rai (Lumphini Park is some 560 rai, by comparison). 

Before then, though, there are still many obstacles to be overcome, including the construction of a main ground designed to cover a section of Kamphaeng Phet 3 Road which will affect the traffic flow in the area. Public hearings will be held to gauge opinion on the closure of this section of road, which is eventually anticipated to operate as a tree-lined walking street. 

The existing small paths and old metal bridges that currently connect the parks will also be enlarged and upgraded.

"By the time it is officially open to the public in 2020 we want visitors to the three combined parks to feel that they are one whole unit," Pajariya Mahakanjan, head of the design team from the BMA's office of public parks, is quoted as saying by the Post, before going on to compare the completed project to The Mall in London.  

Utthayan Suan Chatuchak is the latest in a string of green spaces to honor the late King Rama 9, notably Pathumwananurak Park next to CentralWorld and the forthcoming conversion of the Royal Turf Club of Thailand.


See also: The secret Bangkok parks and green spaces you never knew existed