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Old November 7th, 2016, 03:22 PM   #461
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Old November 18th, 2016, 12:57 PM   #462
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Nov. 17, 2016
Ground broken for new apartments as part of ‘renewal’
Taipei Times Excerpt



The Taipei City Government yesterday held a groundbreaking ceremony at the site of the former Fong Wong apartment building in Tianmu (天母) to mark the start of work on a new structure.

The apartment block, which was demolished in February last year as part of the city’s urban renewal efforts, was a so-called “sea sand building,” whose concrete contained cheap, ocean-sourced sand, Taipei Deputy Mayor Charles Lin (林欽榮) said at the ceremony, adding that the work was thanks to Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je’s (柯文哲) administration.

The new building is to be completed in 2020, offering residents high-quality housing, Lin said.

The building in 2006 was listed by the municipal government as a structure that should be rebuilt and went through a lengthy process involving the formulation of urban renewal plans, calculations to redistribute property rights and an urban design review before a construction license was approved for the project, he said.

As ensuring public safety is a principle the city government strictly abides by, Fong Wong’s example serves as a reminder that the process of urban regeneration needs to be expedited, he said.

According to regulations governing sea sand buildings, the new structure is to have 30 percent more floor space, with 24 stories and five underground levels, Lin said.
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Old November 21st, 2016, 09:05 AM   #463
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Taipei ‘greening’ project ahead of schedule
Taipei Times Excerpt
Nov. 20, 2016

Work at the No. 6 Bus Station plaza, next to the Taipei Railway Station, is ahead of schedule and the 1.6 hectare area featuring green spaces and a new sidewalk is likely to be opened before the Lunar New Year holidays in January, the Taipei City Government said yesterday.

“The plaza, which is on the former Taipei West Bus Station site on Zhongxiao W Road, has an important role in Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je’s (柯文哲) West Gateway Initiative because of its proximity to the historic North Gate,” Taipei Deputy Mayor Charles Lin (林欽榮) told a news conference in Taipei.

The plan is for the North Gate to become the nation’s “door,” and the bus station project is one of many aimed at improving traffic and views in the area, beginning with the demolition of the Zhongxiao Bridge (忠孝橋) ramp in December 2014.

The plaza is designed to represent the nation’s “living room,” Lin said.

The plaza completes an urban revitalization plan initiated in 1994 to make the area a pedestrian zone, he said.
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Old November 22nd, 2016, 01:42 PM   #464
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Nov. 22, 2016
Airport MRT passes test
Taipei Times Excerpt


1000928總統視察桃園國際機場聯外捷運系統工程進度及首列電聯車運抵公開活動 by 總統府, on Flickr

Taoyuan Metro Corp yesterday said that the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport MRT system finally met two crucial criteria during its final inspection on Sunday and full operation of the line is expected soon.

Minister of Transportation and Communications Hochen Tan (賀陳旦) and Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦) jointly made the announcement after inspecting the system’s station near Taipei Railway Station.

To qualify for final inspection, conducted by the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, the system had to score 99 percent in a reliability test for seven consecutive days, and the number of delays exceeding five minutes had to be limited to two.

Cheng said that the criteria were met at 11pm on Sunday, when the system reliability reached 99 percent on the last test.

Records of the seven-day test also showed that a train was delayed for more than five minutes only once.

Prior to the successful test, the system had failed to reach the criteria six times, Taoyuan Metro Corp said.

Cheng said that the results were achieved through hardworking company staff and support from contractors.

The MRT is the fourth airport rail built in Asia, Cheng said, adding that the Taoyuan City Government and Taoyuan Metro Corp would ensure that they have done all the preparatory work well before the official launch of the system, including a trial run involving people using the system, he said.

Cheng said that they would show people how to check in luggage at the system’s station in Taipei three hours before boarding.
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Old November 25th, 2016, 09:18 AM   #465
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Taipei Times Excerpt
Nov. 24, 2016
Dome site restart unlikely this year
REVIEWS : Taipei Department of Urban Development Commissioner Lin Jou-min said that reviews of the complex might not proceed as smoothly as reported

Taipei Department of Urban Development Commissioner Lin Jou-min (林洲民) yesterday hinted it is unlikely that work at the Taipei Dome site would be resumed this year as media reports have said.

The Chinese-language Mirror magazine yesterday reported that the Taiwan Architecture and Building Center has held seven meetings to review the Dome complex’s readiness in the case of fire or other situations where an evacuation is necessary.

The center is to hold two more meetings to review the safety of five half-finished structures, with the review process to be completed by Friday next week, the magazine said.

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) has appointed his chief of staff, Tsai Pi-ju (蔡壁如), to oversee the city’s negotiations with Dome contractor Farglory Group, with construction suspended since May last year over safety concerns, the report said.

Negotiations between the municipal government and Farglory were previously headed by Taipei Deputy Mayor Teng Chia-chi (鄧家基).

Taipei Deputy Mayor Chen Jin-chun (陳景峻) said that he had met with Farglory representatives several times, adding that the meetings had a “friendly” undercurrent.

Chen said that he hoped work at the site would be resumed by the end of this year.
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Old November 29th, 2016, 09:52 AM   #466
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Taipei mayor pans Farglory’s ‘haggling’ over operation costs
Taipei Times Excerpt
Nov. 27, 2016

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday criticized Taipei Dome contractor Farglory Group for “haggling” over the cost of the complex’s operations after a media report said the corporation is planning to abandon the beleaguered build-operate-transfer (BOT) project.

The Chinese-language Liberty Times (the Taipei Times’ sister newspaper) yesterday reported that Farglory planned to abandon the project out of concerns over a new property tax and the rent it would be required to pay for the duration of the BOT contract once the Dome complex begins operations.

Farglory is waiting for the next opportunity to dissolve the BOT contract, the report said.
“Property and land taxes are levied nationwide. They are not directed at Farglory,” Ko said yesterday on the sidelines of a premiere of documentaries on Taipei’s agricultural sector.

“First, they nag every day saying they want to build [the Dome]. Then they complain about high land and property taxes after we ask them to apply for resumption of construction,” Ko said, describing Farglory’s alleged plan as an attempt at haggling.

According to the Liberty Times, Farglory would shoulder property and land taxes totaling more than NT$30 billion (US$939,202) over the contract’s life, making it impossible for the conglomerate to offset operating costs with the complex’s estimated revenue, the report said.

Due to land values calculated by the municipal government rising in recent years, the rent that the city government charges Farglory for the Dome site increased from NT$42.62 million between 2009 and 2012 to NT$67.06 million from 2013 to last year.
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Old December 2nd, 2016, 01:47 PM   #467
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Dec. 01, 2016
Taipei Times Excerpt
Government mulling incentives for urban renewal


Taipei: A mix of Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, and everything in between #TourDeTaiwan by Kevin Lim, on Flickr

The government plans to roll out floor space incentives and property tax breaks to encourage urban renewal, Minister of the Interior Yeh Jiunn-rong (葉俊榮) said yesterday, following reports that the Executive Yuan was mulling granting life-long tax benefits to property owners who participate in urban renewal projects.

To encourage wider participation in urban renewal, the ministry plans to raise floor area ratios, the ratio of a building’s total floor area to the size of the plot of land on which it is built, Yeh said at a meeting of the Legislative Yuan’s Internal Administration Committee.

Depending on the size of the land to be developed, homeowners participating in urban renewal projects could be entitled to preferential floor area ratios, he said.

A site smaller than 500m2 could be redeveloped at its original floor area ratio, while a site between 500m2 and 1,000m2 could be redeveloped at 115 percent of its original ratio and a site larger than 1,000m2 could be redeveloped to 130 percent of its original ratio, Yeh said.

In addition to the floor space incentives, the Ministry of the Interior on Tuesday proposed preferential housing and land taxes for homeowners participating in urban renewal projects.

Participants in urban renewal projects who do not sell their new properties are entitled to a 50 percent reduction in housing and land taxes for two years after the completion of the project.

The ministry proposed extending the preferential tax rates indefinitely, allowing participants to enjoy the tax breaks until they sell the properties.
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Old December 4th, 2016, 06:08 AM   #468
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Dec. 04, 2016
Taoyuan announces fares for airport metro
AFFORDABLE? Rides between Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport and downtown Taipei are to cost NT$160, as much as taking the high-speed rail sans shuttle transfer
Taipei Times with CNA Excerpt

Fares for the highly anticipated metro line that connects downtown Taipei and Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, the nation’s main international gateway, have been set at a maximum of NT$160, Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦) said on Friday.

A ride between Taipei Main Station and Huanbei Station in Taoyuan, the last stop on the newly built line, is to cost NT$160, Cheng said.

That would also be the price for rides between Taipei Main Station and the airport’s first or second terminals, according to fares published by the Taoyuan Metro Corp, which is to manage and operate the 51km line that runs through three northern metropolitan areas — Taipei, New Taipei City and Taoyuan.

The minimum fare was set at NT$30, the company said, adding that fares were based on a formula laid out in the Mass Rapid Transit Act (大眾捷運法).

Fares were not calculated based on operating costs, because that would have put the price of a ticket between Taipei and the airport at NT$270, which is “far more than what people can afford,” the company said

Fares on the new line should be higher than that of buses, usually about NT$125, but cheaper than taking a high-speed train to Taoyuan, which is also NT$160, but does not include a NT$30 shuttle bus between the airport and Taoyuan’s high-speed rail station.
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Old December 5th, 2016, 01:16 PM   #469
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Dec. 05, 2016
Airport MRT inspection results due to be released
ALL GOOD THINGS : Officials said inspectors found no major problems, meaning that after two decades, the line might be on track to begin operations next year
Taipei Times Excerpt

Results of a preliminary inspection of the much-delayed Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport MRT system are scheduled to be released today, moving the project one step closer to an official launch.

The Bureau of High Speed Rail, which administered the inspection, said that experts inspecting the system were satisfied with what they saw on Saturday and yesterday, adding it also administered tests to the staff of the MRT system to observe how they responded to various hypothetical situations.

The scenarios included problems with the train system, the power supply, signaling and emergencies, the bureau said.

Experts were scheduled to discuss the results of the inspection last night, and the results were to be made public today.

Based on its administrative procedures, the Taoyuan Metro Corp is supposed to address any shortfalls that are picked up by the inspection.

The company may apply for a final inspection of the system from the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) after it fixes any problems. The company can then decide the official launch date of the system once it receives confirmation that any problems have been sufficiently addressed.

The bureau said no major problems were discovered by the inspectors.

Earlier this year, MOTC Minister Hochen Tan (賀陳旦) said that the new MRT system would be launched “during the first half of the first six months of next year.”

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Cheng Yun-peng (鄭運鵬) said on Facebook that the DPP inherited “a mess,” from the previous administration and that there were no easy solutions to the predicament.

The project has encountered several challenges in the past two decades, including a change of the contractor in charge of the project and the government’s repeated failures to launch the system on the dates it promised.

The DPP administration established a taskforce in June, which finished a comprehensive examination of the system in August and identified 4,000 shortcomings, Cheng said.

The operator managed to raise the reliability of the system to more than 99 percent, which enabled it to reach the threshold sufficient for a preliminary inspection.
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Old December 11th, 2016, 03:03 AM   #470
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Can finally make the city of Taipei,
renovated to South Korea's standard!

Last edited by chichung; December 11th, 2016 at 03:18 AM.
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Old December 14th, 2016, 12:23 PM   #471
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Premier wants airport MRT line operational before Spring Festival
12 December 2016
Excerpt

(CNA) Premier Lin Chuan (林全) has instructed that if possible, he wants to see the new airport mass rapid transit (MRT) line begin commercial operations before the Spring Festival in late January next year.

Lin hopes the airport MRT line will help raise Taiwan Taoyan International Airport -- Taiwan's largest international gateway -- to a higher category in global airport reviews and ratings, Cabinet spokesman Hsu Kuo-yung (徐國勇) said Monday.

Hsu said Lin expects the cumulative number of arrivals and departures at the airport this year to reach 40 million by Christmas this year, a new high that will allow the airport to enter the category of handling over 40 million passengers in global airport ratings.

The premier expects that the long-anticipated airport MRT line becoming operational will help boost passenger traffic at the airport, thanks to its service feature that will allow travelers to check in for flights in advance at Taipei Main Station, according to Hsu.

With this in mind, Lin instructed that the new line should become operational by the Spring Festival, which is the Lunar New Year holiday from Jan. 27 to Feb. 1, Hsu said.
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Old December 25th, 2016, 12:11 AM   #472
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Dec. 22, 2016
Taipei offers tenders for railway station IT kiosks
NAVIGATION AIDS : The winning bidder would need to deploy 8,000 to 13,000 indoor positioning devices, known as beacons, to give visitors directions
Taipei Times Excerpt

A call for tenders to create kiosks and indoor navigation systems to guide visitors inside Taipei Railway Station and facilitate evacuations during emergencies is to be launched next month, the Taipei City Government said yesterday.

The city government held a public hearing attended by IT firms to explain details of the bidding process.

The selected bidder would be required to deploy 8,000 to 13,000 indoor positioning devices, known as beacons, to give visitors directions in the railway station, as well as kiosks at eight locations, including Beimen MRT Station and Taipei City Mall, which are linked to the main station through underground passageways, guiding foreigners and other visitors to Taipei around the station, Taipei Traffic Engineering Office Liu Jui-lin said.

By activating Bluetooth connections and an app on mobile devices, visitors would be able to open a map showing their location in the station and the way to their destination, such as underground shopping areas and the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) or High Speed Rail passenger platforms, Liu said.

The kiosks should be able to show users three-dimensional maps of all levels of the station, while electronic signs would be set up in the Beimen Station and Taipei Railway Station to inform people of the safest escape route in the case of an emergency, he said.

“The signs would be integrated. If there is smoke coming from Beimen, people need to know in which direction they should evacuate,” Liu said.
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Old January 4th, 2017, 02:55 PM   #473
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Jan. 03, 2017
MOTC study to decide fate of Songshan airport
SHUTDOWN? The study is to focus on whether Taoyuan airport would be able to accommodate all flights that would have to be moved from the airport in Taipei
Taipei Times with CNA Excerpt


TransAsia Airways Airbus A321-200(SL) B-22616 by Manuel Negrerie, on Flickr

The Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) has commissioned a feasibility study on whether Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) should be closed and its flights moved to the nation’s main international gateway in Taoyuan.

The study is focused on “technical” issues — such as whether Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport should be categorized as a dedicated international airport or one that accommodates both international and domestic flights — and the impact of expanding its services, the ministry said.

The study is being carried out by the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) and Taoyuan International Airport Corp, and is expected to be completed by the end of the year, it added.

The ministry said it would also examine whether the Taoyuan airport would be able to handle the additional flights if Songshan airport is closed.

The Taoyuan airport handles about 50 international and regional flights per hour, while Songshan airport handles fewer than 20 per hour, some of which are regional flights.

Since the 2015 crash of a passenger plane in Taipei’s Nangang District (南港) shortly after takeoff from Songshan airport, there have been calls for the airport’s closure amid safety concerns.

When the plane plunged into the Keelung River (基隆河) in Taipei, 43 of the 58 people on board were killed and 15 were injured. Two people in a taxi that was clipped by the wing of the falling plane were also injured.

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) is one of the people who have been calling for the closure of Songshan airport and the relocation of its services to the airport in Taoyuan. The city government has said it plans to turn the land into a park.

The urban renewal argument has been supported by Feng Cheng-min (馮正民), a professor in the Department of Transportation and Logistics Management at National Chiao Tung University, while saying that it would take more time for Taipei residents to get to an airport.

He added that the third runway at the Taoyuan airport would have to be completed before the operations of Songshan airport could be relocated there.

The Taoyuan airport runway is expected to be completed by the end of 2025, five years ahead of schedule, while a new airport MRT line between Taipei and Taoyuan is likely to begin operations in the next few weeks, offering faster travel between the nation’s capital and its main gateway.

However, even with those facilities in place, there would still be the challenges of managing air traffic at the busy Taoyuan airport if it has to handle both jetliners and turboprop aircraft, senior air traffic control officers said.

The Taoyuan airport handles only jetliners, while Songshan airport accommodates some turboprop aircraft, they said.
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Old January 8th, 2017, 05:13 PM   #474
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Jan. 01, 2017
Taipei Times Excerpt
INTERVIEW: Taoyuan mayor touts benefits of MRT line

Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan spoke with ‘Liberty Times’ (sister paper of the ‘Taipei Times’) reporter Wen Chun-hua about the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport MRT system and the effect it is likely to have on the three cities it connects. Cheng said the system will spur the development of real estate and industry, as well as ‘bringing the nearly 9 million people of Taipei, New Taipei City and Taoyuan within an hour of each other’ when it starts operations

Liberty Times (LT): About NT$113.8 billion (US$3.53 billion) has been spent on the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) system, which has been marred by controversy, including six missed deadlines. Where do you think the crux of the problem lies?

Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦): Work on the planning stage of the airport MRT began as early as 1996 when it was decided that it would be built as a build-operate-transfer (BOT) project, with Ever Transit International Co (長生國際開發) winning the contract bid. Financing problems resulted in constant delays, and in 2002, the Bureau of High Speed Rail ended its relationship with Ever Transit, turning the system into a publicly funded project.

The Legislative Yuan then contracted work out to the bidder with the lowest cost proposal, with Japan’s Marubeni Corp and Kawasaki Heavy Industries winning a joint bid for the project.

After construction began in 2006, the section of track between Sanchong Station and Taipei Main Station was changed to an underground track, pushing back the estimated time of completion. Adding to this, the cost of materials and property increased and initial cost estimates caused incessant disputes between Marubeni and its subcontractors.

There were problems with the quality of the signaling system and this delayed progress on network testing. This, combined with substandard construction materials, resulted in the six delays.

Marubeni’s contract with the bureau was found to be illegal and a fine of NT$2.5 billion was imposed.

After I took office I learned of all the problems marring the project and realized we were not able to immediately solve them. The greatest responsibility lies with Marubeni, who won the contract with the lowest-cost bid, but along with its subcontractors produced a sub-par system. The bureau, which was supposed to be supervising the project, as well as Sinotech Engineering consultants, who were supposed to be overlooking construction, are also responsible for the delays.

LT: Have appropriate solutions to these disputes been found?

Cheng: The bureau since 2013 has known that operations would be delayed, as the overall network tests, pre-revenue service running tests and stability tests together produced 4,822 anomalies since that time. By November 2015, the system was still only running at 70 percent operational readiness, which in practical terms means six hours of delays out of a day’s 19 hours of operation.

Then-premier Mao Chi-kuo (毛治國) suggested to the Ministry of Transportation and Communications that the system be put into operation with a reduced number of trains running at lower speed, but to do so would have meant lowering standards and helping contractors cover up their errors. The city government’s hands were tied, all I could do was criticize the ministry for helping the contractors hide their mess and handing a crippled network to the city — this is very irresponsible.

Previous systems tests revealed three core problems with the airport MRT.

The first was that the signaling system would randomly go offline leaving the control room with no way to determine a train’s location — the train would become a ‘ghost train.’ When that happens an emergency braking system is engaged to prevent the possibility of collisions.

The second core problem was that from 2011 until last year the steel wheels have not been regularly grinding against tracks as you would see with operational trains, so the wheels are misshapen. The trains have also accumulated residue from lack of use and high levels of humidity, meaning that trains are unable to stop when entering stations.

More : http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiw.../01/2003662314
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Old January 12th, 2017, 05:12 PM   #475
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
Dec. 01, 2016
Taipei Times Excerpt
Government mulling incentives for urban renewal


Taipei: A mix of Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, and everything in between #TourDeTaiwan by Kevin Lim, on Flickr

The government plans to roll out floor space incentives and property tax breaks to encourage urban renewal, Minister of the Interior Yeh Jiunn-rong (葉俊榮) said yesterday, following reports that the Executive Yuan was mulling granting life-long tax benefits to property owners who participate in urban renewal projects.

To encourage wider participation in urban renewal, the ministry plans to raise floor area ratios, the ratio of a building’s total floor area to the size of the plot of land on which it is built, Yeh said at a meeting of the Legislative Yuan’s Internal Administration Committee.

Depending on the size of the land to be developed, homeowners participating in urban renewal projects could be entitled to preferential floor area ratios, he said.

A site smaller than 500m2 could be redeveloped at its original floor area ratio, while a site between 500m2 and 1,000m2 could be redeveloped at 115 percent of its original ratio and a site larger than 1,000m2 could be redeveloped to 130 percent of its original ratio, Yeh said.

In addition to the floor space incentives, the Ministry of the Interior on Tuesday proposed preferential housing and land taxes for homeowners participating in urban renewal projects.

Participants in urban renewal projects who do not sell their new properties are entitled to a 50 percent reduction in housing and land taxes for two years after the completion of the project.

The ministry proposed extending the preferential tax rates indefinitely, allowing participants to enjoy the tax breaks until they sell the properties.
They should learn from the South African government on urban renewal incentives: http://www.sars.gov.za/ClientSegment...s/default.aspx
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Old January 15th, 2017, 05:21 AM   #476
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Jan 15, 2017
US military club reopened on Yangmingshan
Taipei Times with CNA Excerpt





The Grass Mountain Teen Club, a brick compound on Yangmingshan (陽明山) that served as a club for US soldiers and their families stationed in Taiwan from the 1950s to the 1970s, has reopened as a public space for music, food and nostalgia.

The former club, built in the 1950s and named Grass Mountain Teen Club in 1968, has been renamed the Brick Yard 33 1/3 (BY33). Combining indoor and outdoor spaces, it is a place where people can listen to vinyl records, eat food inspired by southern US cuisine and savor the atmosphere.

The project was undertaken under the Old House renaissance program launched by the Taipei City Government in 2012. Private investors were encouraged to join the project to restore “cultural properties” that had been abandoned and “revive” them by transforming them into cultural and creative spaces.

In 2014, U-Tech Media Corp won a public tender to renovate the US soldiers’ club, which consisted of red-brick buildings and two swimming pools on a nearly 3,300m2 site on a Yangmingshan hillside.

The compound, which was part of a cluster of dormitories for US military personnel stationed in Taiwan, was a key leisure site of the soldiers and their family members in the 1950s to 1970s.

At the BY33 opening ceremony on Thursday last week, U-Tech Media chairman Steve Chang (張昭焚) said the company budgeted NT$70 million (US$2.22 million) to restore the old compound, but spent NT$95 million because it wanted the renovation to be as close to its original state as possible.

Gordon Yeh (葉垂景), chairman of the Ritek Group, which founded U-Tech Media, said the company was determined to restore the buildings using their original construction techniques and it scoured the nation for builders with knowledge of traditional skills to assist in the project.

His team located the factory that produced the roof tiles used when the club was remodeled more than 30 years ago and found more than 10,000 of the same tiles still in the factory’s inventory, Yeh said.

After more than two years of construction, the club was transformed into a multipurpose complex divided into three areas: a dining room, a music room and a public bar.
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Old January 25th, 2017, 03:26 PM   #477
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Taipei Times with CNA
Jan. 20, 2017
Taoyuan airport aims to complete runway by 2025
EXPANSION : The Ministry of Transportation and Communications moved up the completion date by five years to meet growing air transportation demand

The Taoyuan International Airport Corp has started an environmental impact assessment on a third runway project, and hopes that work on the runway will be completed by 2025, the company said yesterday.

The Ministry of Transportation and Communications last year moved up the completion date of the third runway from 2030 to 2025 in an effort to meet growing air transportation demands.

The environmental impact assessment (EIA) process has also been activated ahead of schedule, the company said.

The process will take about 30 months to complete, it added.

The third runway, measuring 4,000m, is to be on the north side of the airport and is to run parallel to the airport’s other two runways.

It is to be longer than both the 3,600m south runway and the 3,800m north runway, the company said.

The airport’s annual traffic topped 40 million passengers on Dec. 13 last year for the first time in the facility’s 37-year history.

However, the airport’s two terminals have a combined capacity of only 32 million passengers per year, prompting the company to require construction of an additional smaller terminal before the completion of terminal expansion and construction projects to cope with the rapid increase in traffic volume.

The company has begun a project to expand Terminal Two, which is scheduled to be completed in 2020 and start operations in 2021.

Construction on a third terminal has also started, but it is not expected to be completed until 2020.
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Old January 28th, 2017, 01:34 PM   #478
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Jan. 26, 2017
MRT housing policy flawed, Ko says
OVERHAUL REQUIRED: The 104 unused apartments integrated with Taipei MRT stations with monthly rents in excess of NT$20,000 should be sold, the mayor said
Taipei Times

Leasing out public housing units integrated with Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) stations is a flawed policy, as such apartments usually command expensive rents and the Taipei City Government would seek to sell unoccupied units whose rent exceeds NT$20,000, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said.

Of the 570 public-housing units integrated with MRT stations, 277 command monthly rents of more than NT$20,000, of which 104 had not been leased out, statistics compiled by the Taipei Department of Urban Development showed.

Responding to reporters’ queries on Tuesday regarding the city’s plan for the unleased apartments, Ko, citing the highest rent set for public-housing units, said that if one had NT$33,000 to pay a monthly rent one might as well take out a mortgage.

Citing buildings integrated with Japanese metro stations as an example, he said the buildings should have been built to house commercial property instead, as “where there are people, there is business to be done.”

“Units that have a monthly rent of more than NT$20,000 should be sold. Our housing policies needs to be overhauled,” Ko said.

Ko yesterday said that leasing out homes integrated with MRT stations represented a “strategic flaw” by the municipal government.

A forum on “residential justice” is to be held in March to discuss whether more subsidies should be granted to low-income households leasing public-housing units and whether to reduce the taxes levied on landlords and households with only one home, he said.

Taipei Department of Rapid Transit Systems Commissioner Chang Ze-hsiung (張澤雄) said the 104 unused units can be sold after gaining the council’s approval.

He said it is unlikely that apartments integrated with MRT stations would be used as commercial property, as it would contravene the land use regulations.

Department official Chiu Wan-ching (邱婉清) said the majority of the unused units are expensive apartments at the MeHas City housing complex at MRT Xiaobitan Station and those at MRT Taipei Bridge Station in New Taipei City.
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Old February 3rd, 2017, 01:32 PM   #479
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Feb. 03, 2017
Airport MRT line begins test run, offers free rides
Taipei Times with CNA Excerpt

Photo Source : http://www.cna.com.tw/news/firstnews...2020277-1.aspx







The Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) line began trial runs yesterday, with free rides being offered to the public in two phases over the course of one month before commercial operations begin on March 2, Taoyuan Metro Corp said.

In the first phase, which is to run through Feb. 15, group passengers who apply in advance are to be allowed to travel for free between 8am and 4pm, the company said

During this phase, passengers are to be restricted to boarding and disembarking at only six of the 21 stations, which do not include the two stations serving Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, it added.

The six stations are Taipei Main Station (A1), New Taipei Industrial Park Station (A3), Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital Station (A8), Shanbi Station (A10), Taoyuan High Speed Rail Station (A18) and Huanbei Station (A21), or north link, the company said.

In the second phase, which is to start on Feb. 15 and run through March 1, a daily maximum of 40,000 free rides between 8am and 4pm will be offered to individual passengers who obtain numbered tags at the stations at 7:40am, 9:40am, 11:40am and 1:40pm, the company said, adding that passengers will have access to all 21 stations during this phase.

Although luggage check-in services for airport passengers will be available at Taipei Main Station during the second phase, outbound passengers are advised not to use it until the line’s commercial operations begin on March 2.

The first trial run traveled from Huanbei Station to Taipei Main Station, with Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦) and Taoyuan City Council Speaker Chiu Yi-sheng (邱奕勝) leading about 160 local officials and residents aboard the new train.
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Old February 7th, 2017, 07:06 PM   #480
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View on taipei on the elephant mountain by richard schiepek, on Flickr
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