Bangkok Deputy Governor Sakoltee Phattiyakul will call a meeting this week with relevant agencies to seek possible solutions to the ongoing dispute with street vendors at the capital’s highly popular Khaosan Road, after a ban of pavement vending was defied over the past week.
In the meantime, a temporary solution has been worked out to allow stalls to continue to be set up on the pavements, subject to certain conditions, for one week.
Agencies invited to the meeting include the Metropolitan Police Bureau, the Tourism and Sports Ministry, the Commerce Ministry, the Social Development and Human Security Ministry, and the Internal Security Operation Command, Sakoltee told local radio station Jor Sor 100 on Monday.
The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) earlier banned vendors from pavement vending from August 1, but some 70 per cent of the operators at Khaosan Road have refused to comply with the order since traffic police do not allow them to trade on the actual road surface instead.
In the evening and at night, Khaosan Road has always been blocked by huge numbers of tourists and vendors, but the BMA believes activity along the street should now be legalised, the deputy governor said.
As no permanent solution has yet been reached, nearly all of the roughly 300 Khaosan Road street vendors would be allowed to set up stalls on the pavements from 6pm to midnight, starting from Tuesday evening for a week, he said.
However, the stalls must not take up more than 1.5 metres of the street’s 3-metre-wide pavements, and restaurants and bars cannot place their tables and chairs on the pavements, Sakoltee stressed.