The governor of Phnom Penh’s Daun Penh district Sok Penh Vuth said on Tuesday that authorities will begin taking tough measures on Thursday against illegal parking and street vendors that encroach the pavements alongside Preah Norodom Boulevard between Wat Phnom and Independence Monument.
Penh Vuth told The Post that the authorities will tow away vehicles that park on the pavement and impound them for 15 days before making contracts to return the vehicles. The measures will apply to everyone, he said, including state institutions and car dealers.
“[On Wednesday] we will issue warnings for one more day to ministries, institutions, companies and private houses along the boulevard so they can cooperate."
“After distributing the warning, if they don’t listen . . . we will carry out the administrative measures from February 21,” he said.
Penh Vuth said the public order notice is being made because Preah Norodom Boulevard is the main road which national and international delegates travel on and its pavements are equipped with special luxury tiles for pedestrians and people with disabilities to use.
Meanwhile, Daun Penh District Hall also announced on Monday that to avoid congestion, district authorities will no longer permit people to park cars or motorbikes on the street or pavement.
Business owners are required to have their own private parking and the areas in front of shops and public and private institutions need to always be kept clear.
However, people can park cars within marked parking spaces determined by the Phnom Penh Municipal Public Works Department.
A vendor who lives along Preah Norodom Boulevard said many government officials live along the road and there were rarely too many vehicles parked there.
“It is all right, and the street is good because there are many powerful people. It is well protected."
There isn’t much traffic congestion either and, although it does happen, it is usually sorted out quickly,” the vendor said.
However, the executive director of the Affiliated Network for Social Accountability, San Chey, said the promise to oversee public order by the Daun Penh district administration is an old measure.
He said the authorities need to create new measures through a discussion to bring together all relevant parties to jointly find ways to solve the problem of incursion on pavements.
“We should have discussions so everyone can participate in order to free up the pavements as it is a persistent problem that requires input from all those involved. If there is no discussion, the measures will only be effective in the short term,” he said.
However, Penh Vuth claimed that once the measures are enacted, Preah Norodom Boulevard will be seen as a model for future plans to clean up the city’s streets.