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“Rawai Municipality officers have finished their study of the new plans for the Hollywood Museum,” Mr Aroon said.
“Our office received the new plans from the Ministry of Tourism and Sports (MoTS) head office in Bangkok* last Friday (see story here). I can confirm that the re-designed plans now mean that not a single tree will need to be cut down in order for the project to go ahead.”
A host of officials have been called to attend the meeting, including MoTS Phuket office Director Santi Pawai, as well as officers from Rawai Municipality Public Works division and the project manager from the construction company hired to complete the project.
Officials from the Department of National Parks have been called to give their expert opinion on the impact of the project on the local environment and local community representatives have been invited to present local residents’ opinions, Mayor Aroon added.
“The blueprint of the construction plan will be shown to locals, and we will also present to them the positive and negative aspects of the project and let them express their opinion,” he said.
However, Mayor Aroon noted that the plans were not in a format to present to The Phuket News today.
“But we will make them publicly available as soon as we can,” he said.
“I think we will find the best solution for this issue very soon,” Mayor Aroon said.
The origins, support and apparent approval for the project remain vague.
However, Rachadaporn Pattana, deputy chief of the MoTS Phuket office, today told The Phuket News, “The construction of this project has been entirely organized by the MoTS head office in Bangkok. No local companies have been involved; even the construction company is from Bangkok and was appointed to carry out the project in Bangkok.
“No local budget has been allocated towards this project too. The Cabinet approved the B40 million budget ‘in order to build a tourist attraction’,” she said.
“But if local residents are not satisfied with the project and really oppose it, the budget will be returned to the central government. It will not remain in Phuket to be spent on any other projects,” Ms Rachadaporn said.