This is a smooth section of the road:
Most of the bridges are not usable, so travelers have to ford each creek and river. The last time I went to Ta-Oi, this bridge could be crossed. Something big and heavy got a bad surprise.
This is one of the worst sections of the road. Yes, that is a water buffalo taking a long soak in one of the water filled ruts.
It seemed to complain at us as we went by
The first 15 kms. section of the road has already made travel easier. Not just for us - but also for the people who live in remote villages, who have difficulties getting health care or other services.
While the new road will be convenient, it will definitely create problems. People's cultures will be affected - more information about the outside world will draw young people away from their homes (though that is already happening on a small scale). While there is an opportunity for trade, business, and education, it also means the environment can be exploited more easily - rubber plantations, logging concessions, and mining operations. It's hard to know what is best.