Monday, February 11, 2008

Many new municipalities?

It seems municipality creations become an recurring topic now. While looking for more information about the municipality Takut in Mueang Saraburi district, which I found to be pending announcement, one of the few hits was at There it has a complete list of all current municipalities, altogether 1277 entities. This is confirmed by the DOPAs annual statistic, where the number of municipalities is listed as 1276. In my spreadsheet I only have 1182, which means there are 95 I haven't found yet either in the Royal Gazette or the DOPA population data till 2006, so including the ones listed above it means more than 100 municipalities not yet announced. I wrote a parser for the kontessaban list, which reduced the entries to look at to 150. After eliminating those which were not automatically identified because of misspellings, I added those I cannot find in my spreadsheet yet. But it seems that list is also not without mistakes, as a few of municipalities in my list are missing there, as well as a few number in that list omitted and duplicated.

The new municipalities are not equally distributed on the country - the province Chonburi with 10 and Chiang Mai with 8 top the list. A few strange ones are between them as well - instead of extending the existing municipalities Nam Phong (Khon Kaen) or Bang Chan (Rayong), there are now new municipalities named Lam Nam Phong and Bang Chan (sic!) covering the remaining parts of the subdistrict additionally to the previous municipalities. Having two municipalities with the same name in the same subdistrict and only a different status will create quite some confusion, including create problems for my parsers.

The 2007 population statistics of DOPA only included a few of those new ones however. And as that lists is so far the only way to to guess the geocodes for them, I now have to wait one more year or a new source has to show up to get the geocodes. But of course the preliminary results as of now are incorporated in my spreadsheet already.

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