Pattaya will spend 160 million baht to improve the city’s beach landscape in a bid to attract local tourists.
The landscape redevelopment on a 4-kilometre stretch of Pattaya Beach will start in October and is expected to be finished by the end of the year, Sonthaya Kunplome, mayor of the City of Pattaya, said on Saturday.
“The City of Pattaya needs to change its tourism strategy to draw local tourists to the city,” Mr Sonthaya said.
As well as landscape beautification, such as replacing pavements, the new project will involve building car parking spaces for tourist coaches and vehicles and for local visitors, and incorporate underground public toilets.
The landscape project — starting from North Pattaya and running to Walking Street — would rebuild walkways, redevelop gardens and plant more trees.
Mr Sonthaya said the Pattaya Council approved the 160 million baht budget with the hope the beach landscape redevelopment will “add a new magnet” to the area’s sluggish tourism industry.
In financial terms, Pattaya was one of the hardest-hit tourism areas when the Covid-19 pandemic intensified. Before the outbreak, the city lured 10 million visitors each year, with about 80% of tourists coming from abroad. The largest groups of visitors came from China, Russia and India.
As foreign tourists disappeared, the city worked to improve infrastructure and landscape to prepare for its recovery.
In terms of environmental projects, the city will launch a beach restoration project on a 3.5-km stretch of Jomtien Beach which has been affected by coastal erosion.
The sand filling to cost 600 million baht will replenish the coastline from Lung Sawai restaurant to Jomtien Soi 11. The work is expected to start early next year.
About 680,000 cubic metres of sand will be required for the project.