The National Museum of Marine Science and Technology (NMMST) in Keelung, was finally opened to the public yesterday, after more than two decades of planning and about NT$5.6 billion (US$184.4 million).
The museum opened yesterday morning with an unveiling ceremony attended by Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺), Minister of Education Chiang Wei-ling (蔣偉寧) and other government officials.
Jiang said that the NMMST and Pingtung County’s National Museum of Marine Biology and Aquarium are two of the most important marine education facilities in the nation affiliated with the Ministry of Education.
He said that the NMMST can link with Taiwan’s top marine research institution — National Taiwan Ocean University — as well as benefit from its unique location near the Keelung Harbor.
The premier also said that the museum is to boast the largest aquarium in Asia by 2017.
Chiang said he hoped the museum “can play an important role as an off-campus educational site for students during their 12-year compulsory education,” which is scheduled to start in August.
A planning committee for establishing the NMMST was first set up in 1990, followed by the establishment of its preparatory office in 1997. The Executive Yuan approved its plan in 1999, and after difficulties, including land acquisition, first-phase construction of was completed last year.
The 48 hectares, includes nine exhibition halls, the Chaojing Ocean Center, Chaojing Park and Badouzi Reclamation Park.