It is no accident that the massive surge in project development in suburban areas coincides with announced plans to extend mass transit routes into the greater metropolitan area
The evolution of Bangkoks property market over the past two decades has closely tracked the development of rail mass transit, with a huge increase in condominium supply along BTS and MRT routes. As new rail lines and extensions slowly take shape, condominium developers are looking farther afield to the suburbs, where single houses and townhouses used to dominate the market.
Most of the condominium units in Bangkok from 1993-1998 were located in business areas, such as Sukhumvit, Silom and Sathon roads in the city centre, on Ratchadaphisek Road in the northern fringe area, and Rama III Road in the southern fringe area. Those five main roads were popular for condominiums as all were located in or connected to the citys main commercial areas.The BTS skytrain began operation officially in December 1999, connecting Silom, Sathon, Sukhumvit, Phloenchit, Phaya Thai, Rama I and Phahon Yothin roads within the inner city area.
The MRT underground line opened in 2004.
Both lines helped stimulate the condominium market as many projects were launched along the routes and near stations, especially from 2001-2005, with some developments also in the suburban Bangkok area.The success of mass transit in the city led the government to plan extensions of both lines to suburban Bangkok, and an official announcement in 2006 called for five new lines, starting with the construction of the MRTs Purple Line in 2009 and its Blue Line in 2011.
The Purple Line will extend from the Bang Sue station and run to Bang Yai in Nonthaburi. Most residential projects now along this line are housing estates, with a few condominiums launched in the past two years, most of them in the Bangkok area.