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Phang Nga Tower To Give Phuket 'competition'


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A TALL observation tower overlooking Phang Nga Bay is part of a plan to centralise Phang Nga's administration in a new 300-rai development project.

The project, brainchild of the Governor, Wichai Praisa-Ngob, is aimed at helping Phang Nga to compete with Phuket as a tourist destination.

''Phuket has the airport and most resorts,'' he told Phuketwan. in an exclusive interview. ''But tourists come to see the beauty of Phang Nga.

''We want them to come and stay longer here, too. That way, Phang Nga gets some of the revenue, rather than just day-trippers.''

The spectacular 120-metre tower will have four lifts that can carry visitors high enough to see over the 200 million baht development to beautiful Phang Nga Bay.

At the base will be a souvenir shop and a one village one product store.

Governor Wichai, appointed six months ago, is planning to bring Phang Nga's central administratve headquarters to the new site.

Other important facilities to be relocated to the new riverland park site include the OrBorJor, a large meeting centre, the court block, the electoral office, the land titles office, police and marine police stations, the vehicle registration office, the education office, a culture centre and a health centre.

There will also be a mini-suburb as accommodation for staff for all those departments.

The project, which Governor Wichai says could be completed in two years, is on a tract of land on the banks of the Phang Nga River, not far from the existing township.

Tenders are to be invited from private companies for the right to build the project.

''The people of Phang Nga are being invited first to say what they think of the tower design,'' the governor said.

''When we know what the people think, we will be able to go to the next phase.''

The land has already been cleared and levelled, awaiting the go-ahead.

''Phang Nga really deserves a larger share of the income from tourism,'' he said.

''At the moment, Phuket gets more than its share. The tower is one way of making sure both provinces get a fair deal.

''If tourists want to relax in a beautiful natural environment, then Phang Nga should be their destination. If tourists want nightlife, then their ticket should be to Phuket or Pattaya.''

from phuketwan.com

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