Thailand's rail hub officially starts operation

A new railway hub in Bangkok has officially launched operations. The Krung Thep Aphiwat Central Terminal is Southeast Asia's biggest rail station.

A ceremony was held on Thursday. The station is known to many Bangkok residents as Bang Sue, after the name of the area where it's located. The facility covers more than 250,000 square meters. It will handle 52 long-haul train services.

Thai Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob said, "We are about to mark the first step toward using the Krung Thep Aphiwat Central Terminal as a center for rail travel in Thailand."

A female passenger said, "It's very convenient. You can travel anywhere from here."

The station was originally planned to start full-scale operations in late 2021. But it was delayed a year, as Bangkok residents familiar with the old station complained the new one is too far from the city center.

The historic Hua Lamphong Station has served as the capital's hub since 1916. With its European-style architecture, it continues to operate local routes and special trains several times a year.