Shilin Night Market to reopen on Dec. 25 after makeover

Staff Writer, with CNA

Fri, Dec 09, 2011 - Page 2

Visitors to Shilin Night Market will finally see the results of the Taipei City Government’s controversial renovation program when vendors restart business there on Dec. 25.

The vendors, who were relocated nearby while the work was carried out, are scheduled to move back to the renovated century-old original site next week.

The renovation of the original market site in front of Cicheng Temple in the Shilin District (士林) was completed in September and all the tests and interior decorations will be completed by Tuesday, Taipei Deputy Mayor Chen Hsiung-wen (陳雄文) said.

After consulting with the Shilin Night Market’s Vendor Association, the city government has decided to reopen the market on Dec. 25, an auspicious day on the lunar calendar, said Chen, who is in charge of industrial development in the city.

“It’s a weekend and Christmas — perfect for a festive opening,” he said.

In preparation, the vendors who have been operating temporarily on Jihe Road are scheduled to start moving back in batches to the refurbished building on Thursday and a test run will be carried out between Thursday and Dec. 24, he said.

The temporary market site on Jihe Road will be converted into an arts center.

The night market, a popular tourist attraction inaugurated in 1913, has been designated an historic monument by the city government.

Plans for its renovation began in 1999 and work began in 2006 after the vendors were relocated to a temporary building.

Some critics of the project said the market might lose its appeal if the city government relocated all the food vendors to the basement of the renovated building.