The Taipei City Government yesterday said it would terminate a build-operate-transfer (BOT) contract to construct the Kuang Tzu Senior Citizens’ Home with the contractor, a move that adds uncertainty to the major development project, which was initially scheduled for launch in 2015.
The project, slated to occupy about 6.5 hectares in Taipei’s Xinyi District (信義), is one of the largest BOT projects ever initiated by the city government. A large part of the area is to be used for social welfare facilities, including apartments for senior citizens and nursing centers for the elderly and disabled.
The city government signed the BOT contract with Bo De Development Co in 1999 and gave the land to the company for the project. The company invested NT$9.1 billion (US$314 million) in the project and was required to obtain a construction contract by June.
However, the company failed to meet requirements because tree-protection plans, urban design and environmental impact assessment reports have yet to be approved by city committees.
Taipei City’s Department of Social Welfare Affairs Commissioner Chiang Yi-wen (江綺雯) said the city government terminated the contract because the contractor had failed to obtain the construction contract according to the schedule, while adding that the plan to complete the project, which aims to promote social welfare, remained unchanged.
“The contractor’s failure to obtain the construction contract caused serious delays in our plan to promote social welfare policy via the project,” she told Taipei City Hall.
In a written statement, the company said it had gone to a lot of effort to obtain the construction contract and blamed the delays on negligence at the city government, adding that city officials did not ask the company to present a tree-protection plan or urban design and environmental impact assessment reports until March.
The company said it would take legal action against the city government over the matter.
Taipei City’s Law and Regulation Commission Commissioner Yeh Ching-yuan (葉慶元) said the city government would retrieve the land through legal means before proceeding with the project.
SPEEDING ELETRIC VEHICLES: Available without license requirements, the low-cost vehicles, especially if illicitly modified, can often reach a dangerous speed The government should crack down on illegal electric bicycles and scooters, the non-profit Consumers’ Foundation said on Friday, citing research on the potentially dangerous speed of the vehicles. Electric bicycles and lightweight electric scooters have gained popularity as they do not require registration and riders do not need licenses, the foundation said, adding that as many as 40 percent of them can reach speeds exceeding the legal limit of 25kph for non-licensed two-wheelers. Some consumers also purchased legal electric vehicles and modified them to reach higher speeds, it said. “If the government does not step up efforts to confiscate these
‘RELIABLE PARTNER’: US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar praised the ‘Taiwan model,’ saying that the nation brought its spirit to its COVID-19 response The first memorandum of understanding (MOU) on health cooperation between the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the US Department of Health and Human Services was yesterday signed at the Centers for Disease Control in Taipei. The memorandum was signed between the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the US, by AIT Director Brent Christensen and Taiwan Council for US Affairs Chairperson Jen-ni Yang (楊珍妮). US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar and Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) witnessed the signing of the memorandum, designed to enhance the nations’
Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) yesterday tweeted a welcome to Somaliland’s first representative to Taiwan, Mohamed Omar Hagi Mohamoud, who arrived on Friday. Mohamoud had “braved Chinese pressure” to take up his new post, Wu wrote. “The fact ‘sovereignty & friendship aren’t for sale’ deserves international recognition,” referring to a Somaliland media report earlier this month that Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi had rejected an offer by the Chinese government in exchange for ending its rapprochement with Taiwan. Wu also thanked the US National Security Council (NSC) for praising Taiwan-Somaliland ties. A council tweet on July 10 praised Taiwan
The Taipei City Government yesterday said that construction on the long-suspended Taipei Dome can resume immediately, after it approved a request by the project’s main contractor, Farglory Group. In a statement, the Taipei Construction Management Office said that after it on July 16 issued a new building permit, Farglory submitted revised design plans and an application to resume construction, which the office approved on Friday. Construction had been suspended on the dome, near the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall in Xinyi District (信義), for more than five years due to disagreements between the city and the company over the safety of some of