Sat, Nov 29, 2008 - Page 2 News List

Taipei City snubs cyclists demanding more MRT access

TOO CROWDEDTaipei Rapid Transit Corp said it would not open any more MRT stations to people with bicycles because of the risk of overcrowding

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Taipei City Government said yesterday that it would not open any more MRT stations to cyclists as passenger numbers on the MRT were expected to exceed 1.3 million next year.

A total of 27 MRT stations on the Danshui Line, Xindian Line, Zhonghe Line, Tucheng Line, Nangang Line, Banqiao Line and Xiaonanmen Line allow passengers to carry bicycles onto the trains.

Despite passengers urging the city government to open up more stations to cyclists, the government said that stations would become too crowded if it did so.

Taipei Rapid Transit Corp (TRTC) figures showed that average passenger numbers on the MRT were 1.2 million a day, and were expected to hit more than 1.3 million after the Neihu Line opens next year.

Although cycling has become more popular recently and increasing numbers of Taipei residents have requested that the company open up more MRT stations to cyclists, the company decided not to add any more stations to the list in order to prevent stations and trains from getting too crowded, the company said yesterday during a municipal meeting at Taipei City Hall.

Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) supported the company’s decision, but added that future MRT construction plans should take cyclist needs into consideration.

TRTC began opening some MRT stations to cyclists on weekends and holidays in 2004.

Statistics from the city government showed that the number of passengers carrying bicycles onto the MRT has increased from an average of 200 a day to more than 800.

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