Two students from Jianguo Senior High School have received wide acclaim for a bus-route map they spent one-and-a-half years making after posting it on the Internet.
Chen Wei-han (陳維漢) said he and Wu Hsiang-yu (吳祥瑀) had first drawn the map in notebooks using data from official guides, Internet sources and cellphone apps.
The pair said they went through the routes systematically by administrative district and only combined the maps at the end.
The students said that they drew the maps in their spare time, adding that it had simply been a project to challenge themselves.
“Someone drew the entire route map for buses in Greater Taichung several years ago,” the students said, adding that since no one had done it for Taipei and New Taipei City, they decided to take it upon themselves.
The two students were members of the school’s Rail and Roads Research Club, with Chen being a bus fan and Wu a railroad fan.
Aside from preparing the detailed maps, Chen and Wu compiled two manuals in which they listed every mistake they found, such as discrepancies between station names and bus routes among others.
Chen said that Taipei had a better framework and therefore less mistakes.
New Taipei City had more mistakes, but it covers a larger area, he said.
The two said they hoped their map would not only be a point of reference for visitors and netizens, but also give the city governments a means to improve their services.
Chen Jung-ming (陳榮明), who heads the Taipei City government’s Public Transportation Department, said that although the department had a similar map, it was limited due to size and portability issues.
“We had to compromise and so only listed routes with more frequent runs,” Chen Jung-ming said.
After looking over the students’ map, Chen Jung-ming said the department would welcome the two to work part-time at the department over the summer, adding: “We would pay handsomely.”