304 finally gets wildlife corridor

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4 years 2 months ago - 4 years 2 months ago #2135 by Paul T
304 finally gets wildlife corridor was created by Paul T
The National Environment Board (NEB) has finally approved the long discussed plan to build a "wildlife corridor" to aid wild animals crossing Highway 304 in the Dong Phayayen-Khao Yai World Heritage Site to link Khao Yao and Thap Lan national parks. There will be two elevated sections and two tunnels, totalling 1500 metres.

Construction should start next year.

Read the Bangkok Post Article

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4 years 2 months ago #2136 by onflipflops
Replied by onflipflops on topic 304 finally gets wildlife corridor
Wow, that might be the best news I've heard in years! A 3 billion project just for nature.
In my home country they've made bridges (ecoduct) over the highway. So animals use the bridge to cross the highway. I estimate these are just about 100 m wide, so perhaps a bit smaller than the tunnel sections they plan to make. But when you walk on the top you don't have the feeling you're on a bridge except that you hear traffic. And it has proven to work!
There is concern that this would turn into a poaching spot.
Maybe useful to create a ranger station nearby and place 24hr surveillance cams in the crossing areas.
Anyway I suppose they will set up permanent camera traps to see if the crossings are actually used by animals.

Thanks for sharing, great news to start the morning just before I'm going for another KY visit.

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4 years 2 months ago - 4 years 2 months ago #2137 by Bagheera
Replied by Bagheera on topic 304 finally gets wildlife corridor
Just awesome news! Lets hope it can get underway before any political difficulties disrupt it's process.
How brilliant it would be to interlink these two vast areas, maybe onflipflops you might even get some previously extirpated carnivores back in your neck of the woods..........

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4 years 2 months ago #2139 by onflipflops
Replied by onflipflops on topic 304 finally gets wildlife corridor
Yes Bagheera, I'm ready for a sighting of a large striped creature ;)

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4 years 2 months ago #2145 by NN
Replied by NN on topic 304 finally gets wildlife corridor
It seems the original BP story didn't provide the full details about the tunnels being part of a four lane superhighway, which has been criticized is a recent BP editorial www.bangkokpost.com/opinion/opinion/422948

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4 years 2 months ago #2146 by Xenocrab
Replied by Xenocrab on topic 304 finally gets wildlife corridor
There was never any secret about the road expansion, this is why the whole story came to the attention of the public many years ago, even before UNESCO included the problem of the road in a set of conditions to be rectified if World Heritage Status was to be granted.

The DNP, along with public opinion, managed to stop the Highways Department from expanding the road to four lanes at the two points the parks converge. If you ever go there you will see the sheer amount of traffic that flows through 24hrs a day. Its impossible to not see the road expanding as its the main gateway from the eastern seaboard to the northeast of Thailand.

As the road was made prior to the need for EIA's let alone SEIA's there is no legal requirement to consult anyone about its expansion. Well minded groups who want to stop the expansion, albeit underground or on raised fly-overs, need to suggest other solutions and potential problems before dismissing this trade-off opportunity.

Note, the other major problem for wildlife in the complex is the SE to NE road though Noen Din Daeng #348. This is seeing a lot of expansion, but has largely remained unmentioned, except by UNESCO in their WHS scoping mission. Already it is almost as busy as #304 and unless receives serious public scrutiny will be heading towards motorway standard within 10 years and another site needing a huge budget to mitigate it.

Who knows if NGOs and protesters make too much noise maybe the business sector will flex their muscles and demand more roads through the complex to ship their produce to the port.. then what ?

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4 years 2 months ago #2147 by NN
Replied by NN on topic 304 finally gets wildlife corridor
I agree with most of what you're saying and just posted the link for information. The crackdown on encroaching in the area is a positive step, let's hope it continues. When I was last in the area I noticed restaurants with wild boar on the menu. It would be great if locals could see NPs and wildlife as benefit to the community.

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4 years 1 month ago #2232 by Xenocrab
Replied by Xenocrab on topic 304 finally gets wildlife corridor
More ill informed comments from afar.

'A global tragedy' in the making? Thailand plans highway expansion through World Heritage Site
Read more at news.mongabay.com/2014/0829-gfrn-morgan-...#XrAiWdHEHIRWA4Vh.99

The DNP have conducted a lot of background research on the situation. There have been numerous hearings in which the public participated, where were these complaining folks when this was happening? The writing in the Mongabay piece is skewed to make readers believe this is all something new. If no effort was being made to do the right thing this would have been a 6 lane highway many years ago.
If anyone out there wants a cause - help stop a road being proposed from Kanchanaburi to Umpang. Originally built as a military security road along the Thai Burma border there are plans to renovate this abandoned route and open to public. It passes through prime tiger, elephant and tapir habitat.
or
How about saying something about the Kanchanaburi to Dawei road? Eight lanes, 2 railway tracks, power lines..all creating a 200m wide manmade barrier which will dissect the Tenasserim landscape from east to west.

All in all building bridges and tunnels in the 304 corridor is the least of the worries.

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"Each species is a masterpiece, a creation assembled with extreme care and genius." > Edward O. Wilson

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