The Taipei City Government is willing to consider compromises to avoid demolishing buildings on the Taipei Dome site as long as safety is guaranteed, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said yesterday.
“We are willing to consider any compromise proposal as long as the safety of city residents is guaranteed,” Ko said.
He said that emptying the first level of a shopping mall adjacent to the facility or other adjustments to the “volume,” “hardware” or “software” of the site were all options, citing as an example that it was improbable for the site’s underground parking lot to be left entirely unused.
While Taipei Deputy Mayor Charles Lin (林欽榮) had previously called for the parking lot to be sealed off as a fire hazard, Ko said that there were other methods that could be used to address the city’s safety concerns.
The city government and Farglory Land Development Co (遠雄建設), the contractor in charge of construction, have been locked in a conflict over site safety since the release of a city report earlier this month questioning whether the site could be quickly evacuated in an emergency.
The report called for either the Taipei Dome itself or its neighboring shopping mall to be demolished to create extra evacuation space.
Taipei New Construction Office Director Huang Chih-feng (黃治峰), who sits on the city’s safety inspection committee, was quoted in the Chinese-language Next Magazine yesterday as saying that adjustments, such as clearing a level of the shopping mall or implementing measures to control pedestrian flow, would be the focus of the next round of talks between Farglory and the city government.
Unnamed sources were cited as saying that reducing site usage density was also an option.
According to media reports, a Taipei Research, Development and Evaluation Commission poll last week found that 67 percent of city residents support “shrinking” the Taipei Dome, compared with 49 percent who support its “demolition.”
Meanwhile, the Department of Rapid Transportation Systems yesterday said that while Taipei Dome construction had “influenced” the city’s Bannan MRT line, the flexible “shell” around the MRT system has so far been sufficient to prevent any damage.
The department said it has established a supervisory group to monitor changes and sent employees into the Taipei Dome site to check on the construction and inspect Farglory’s measurements.
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