Hu hails Taiwan Tower
Taiwan Tower will become the brightest spot in Greater Taichung, Taichung Mayor Jason Hu (胡志強) said yesterday, adding the structure would be “a spot bright enough for the whole world to see.” Speaking after a briefing by officials from the city’s Urban Development Department, Hu said the tower would be like the sun and the city’s many districts surrounding the tower would be like the planets. Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto will design the Taiwan Tower after his “21st Century Oasis” entry won first prize in the Taiwan Tower International Competition. Fujimoto’s entry was inspired by the intertwined trunk of the banyan tree and the shape of the country. It will be complemented by a museum and an exhibition space, as well as a green rooftop floating 300m above the city. Hu said the building’s revolutionary concept has attracted a lot of attention internationally. The tower is set to be completed in 2017 and has a budget of NT$6.59 billion (US$218.47 million).
Maokong Gondola checked
The Taipei Rapid Transit Corp (TRTC) said on Sunday that the Maokong Gondola was set to undergo routine mechanical checkups from yesterday through Dec. 15. The company said the checkup was in compliance with the cable company POMA’s handbook, which specifies that an annual mechanical checkup of 11 days is needed to ensure passenger safety. The checkup will be completed in time for the system to accommodate the large crowds that are expected to use the system during Christmas, New Year’s Eve and the Lunar New Year holiday season, the officials said. Mechanics from POMA will provide on-site guidance to help the TRTC’s mechanics, the firm said.
Man donates 166 blood bags
Taiwanese businessman Chen Tse-jen (陳澤人) has donated 166 bags of blood since he moved to Shanghai in 2003, making him the top blood donor in the Chinese city, the Shanghai Morning Post said on Friday. The paper said that the total amount of blood he has donated is equivalent to 40 times that required for a full blood transfusion. Moreover, the paper reported, on Thursday, Chen donated his 200th bag of platelets — blood cells that help control bleeding — in China. Including donations made in Taiwan, Chen has given a total of 615 bags of platelets. The 58-year-old Chen said that visits to the hospital as a child made him realize the importance of blood donations. As a child he was very sick, Chen said, and he saw how a shortage of blood caused great anxiety among the families of patients. Besides helping others, Chen added, giving blood allowed him to check up on his health as well.
Taiwan win disc medals
Taiwan grabbed a silver medal and a bronze on Sunday in the finals of a flying disc tournament in Greater Kaohsiung. The final of this year’s World Flying Disc Federation Asia Oceanic Ultimate Championships, which included an open division and a mixed division, took place at the city’s National Stadium. In the mixed division, Taiwan came third, defeating Singapore 16-8. However, in the open division, even though Taiwan scored the first point, the team could not stay consistent against a Japanese team, who took the gold medal with a final score of 17-9. Japan bagged gold in both the open and the mixed divisions. The competition was held from Thursday through Sunday with teams from nine countries.