The nation’s largest railway system yesterday officially started using its new train maintenance depot in Taoyaun County’s Fugang (富岡), saying that the construction of facilities near the depot is scheduled to be completed later this year.
The Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) said that it is one of the few train maintenance depots in the world that is equipped with a number of state-of-the-art facilities, including a machine that can lift eight train carriages at a time.
The TRA’s old train maintenance depot, which was built in 1935, is in Taipei’s Xinyi District (信義). Because the administration is soon to appropriate the Nangang Tunnel (南港隧道) for the Taiwan High Speed Rail Co, whose trains would block the entrance to the depot, the administration plans to close the depot in Taipei at the end of this month and relocate the machinery to the new depot in Fugang.
The TRA added that the new train maintenance depot is approximately 52 hectares. The property also hosts offices for railway administration personnel, a railway culture park and an ecological park.
According to the TRA, the total construction costs of the new depot is approximately NT$13.3 billion. Only the first stage of construction has been completed.
The relocation project, launched in 2009, is to include a 15 hectare ecological reserve that will be ideal for educational tours and weekend getaways, the TRA said, adding that visitors would also be welcome to watch how carriages are deployed from the depot’s central operation control center.