Sun, Oct 07, 2007 - Page 3 News List

Ma promises to open airport MRT link in four years

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) presidential candidate Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday promised to open the MRT system linking Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport to Taipei City in four years and expand greater Taipei's transportation network to Taoyuan if he were elected.

Ma pledged to open the section of the Airport Line, now under construction, between Jhongli (中壢) in Taoyuan County and Sanchong (三重) in Taipei County, in four years and the whole line in six years.

The first phase of construction of the line in metropolitan Taoyuan County -- connecting the Taoyuan high speed rail station to Taoyuan Railway Station -- will be completed in eight years.

The second phase connects Jhongli Railway Station to Bade City (八德), also in Taoyuan County, Ma said.

"Connecting railway transportation between Taoyuan and Taipei will establish a transportation network in northern Taiwan," Ma said yesterday in Taoyuan.

"The plan will be helpful for the development of Taoyuan by providing convenient transportation," he said.

The Airport MRT line is one of the Ten New Major Construction Projects announced by the Cabinet in 2003.

Once completed, travel time from Taipei City to the international airport will be reduced to 35 minutes.

Ma has also promised to create an "international airport town" in Taoyuan County as part of a plan to turn Taiwan into an Asia-Pacific regional operations center.

The Ministry of Transportation and Communications is in charge of construction on the section of the line from the airport to Sanchong.

The Taipei City Government is responsible for the construction of the remainder of the line from Sanchong to Taipei Railway Station.

Twenty-two stations will be located along the 51.5km line, including seven underground stations and 15 elevated stations.

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