Wed, Apr 23, 2014 - Page 3 News List

Tamhai town protesters call on public to join rally

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

Activists are today calling for support in an overnight protest against the Tamhai New Town (淡海新市鎮) project to be held in front of the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) building in Taipei.

An alliance against land expropriation for the project called on the public via Facebook to join them at 7pm today to protest against the proposed second-phase land expropriation, which they say will benefit large corporations through real-estate speculation.

The alliance said the first phase of the project, which began construction 20 years ago, still has a vacancy rate of more than 50 percent, proving that the development model was faulty.

The group said that the Construction and Planning Administration should therefore not need land expropriation for the project’s second phase.

As part of a stricter second-phase review process, due to what the project team acknowledges are the possibly controversial aspects and effects on residents and the environment, another environmental impact assessment meeting is to be held tomorrow.

The alliance said that under EPA procedures, related government agencies, residents, specialists and civic groups must discuss the items being evaluated, the methods used, as well as feasible alternatives.

The group said the land required for the first section of the second phase is 655 hectares and would require the demolition of a total of 1,592 houses and the rehousing of about 4,800 people.

The alliance said today’s overnight protest was scheduled to start with lectures and music performances, followed by a documentary about Tamhai New Town and a discussion forum at midnight.

The protest is scheduled to continue tomorrow and run until the meeting ends in the afternoon.

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