Authorities to revamp Bangkok’s airport

I wanted to point out, quickly, this intriguing AP story from Monday about a plan to revamp Thailand’s Suvarnabhumi International airport:

Baggage handlers at Thailand’s main airport now wear uniforms with pockets sewn shut to prevent pilfering. Police are hauling away illegal taxi touts. And cushions are being added to metal seats at departure gates derided as a “pain in the rear.”

An overhaul is under way at Bangkok’s $3.8 billion Suvarnabhumi Airport, which is virtually brand new but trying to put a scandal-plagued past behind and become one of the world’s top 10 airports — a goal senior officials concede might be a long shot for this year.

The campaign is partly aimed at addressing passenger complaints logged since Suvarnabhumi opened in 2006.

Free Wi-Fi will be in place by the end of the month and 126 Internet terminals have been installed for travelers without laptops, according to Airports of Thailand, the airport’s operator. Other upgrades include more restrooms, improved signs and the upholstery of all 19,000 cold metallic seats with turquoise, peach, green and purple cushions that brighten Suvarnabhumi’s concrete-and-steel design, panned by some critics as too monotone.

(Emphasis mine.)

For reference, here’s some context regarding past problems with the airport.

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