Tayuan spokesman says CAA should foot bill for lighting

WASTEFUL: Chang Chien-lung said that the nightime lighting of an `air passenger park' was a form of advertising, a claim denied by officials

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA

Sat, Oct 28, 2006 - Page 2

A spokesman for Tayuan Township's (大園) administrative office said the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) should foot the outdoor lighting bill for an "air passenger park" near Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TTIA).

According to the spokesman, the 300-plus street lights in the "air passenger park" in the township have been kept on through the night as a form of advertising to attract investors to set up shop in the vast complex, "burning" NT$4 million (US$120,000) a year in electricity bills.

`airport city'

The "air passenger park" is part of the government's ambitious plan to develop an "airport city" near TTIA, Taiwan's main gateway, to enhance the nation's competitiveness in the world aviation market. The "airport city" comprises an air passenger park, an air cargo park and a free trade port zone.

The CAA and other government agencies have been working hard to lure business groups to invest in the park.

As Taoyuan County already has several industrial parks, their cluster effects have made the new "air passenger park" less attractive to investors.

At a time of high gas prices, Tayuan Township Mayor Chang Chien-lung (張建隆) said it's too wasteful to have a large number of street lights lit through the night in an almost empty area.

pay up

Chang suggested that the number of street lights to be kept lit at night be slashed. He also demanded that the CAA pay for the park's outdoor-lighting bill, or at least foot 70 percent of the bill plus providing a maintenance subsidy. He also requested that the Taoyuan County Government pay for 30 percent of the park's outdoor-lighting bill.

Officials at the park's administration center claimed that turning on the park's street lights at night is not done for advertising, but rather for public safety.

In response to Chang's suggestions, the officials said the CAA and the Taoyuan County Government will come up with measures to address the issue.