11 July 2024

Thailand’s Highways Department is accelerating the construction of Motorway M81, between Bang Yai in Nonthaburi province and Kanchanaburi province, to complete it in January 2024.

The department’s director-general, Sarawut Songsivilai, said that 14 sections of the 25-section, 96km motorway are complete, covering a distance of 70km.

After the completion of all 25 sections, anticipated in January 2024, it will be opened for a free trial run for three months, he said, adding that the entire project, worth about 56 billion baht, is expected to open officially for service in January 2025.

The motorway will be an important logistics route and a trade gateway for the western region of Thailand, said Sarawut.

Thanasak Wongtanakitcharoen, director of the Inter-City Motorway Division, said that traffic management on the motorway and the installation of a toll collection system will be undertaken under a public private partnership (PPP) model, with the private sector partner to be selected for investment in and management of the motorway and eight toll gates, adding that total investment is estimated at 27.8 billion baht.

As for the construction and management of three rest areas, he said that a private company will be selected to undertake the construction of infrastructure, estimated to cost about 6.4 billion baht, and the management of the areas for a period of 30 years.

A bid for the rest area project is expected at the end of this year, with the construction expected to take about two years.

The motorway has 4-6 traffic lanes, linking the western ring road (Kanchanapisek Road) in Bang Yai district of Nonthaburi province with Highway 324, running between Kanchanaburi and Phanom Thuan district, passing through Bangkok, Nonthaburi, Nakhon Pathom and Kanchanaburi provinces.