The Ministry of Transportation and Communications yesterday finalized route for a Taiwan High Speed Rail line to Yilan County, which avoids the Feitsui Water Reservoir’s (翡翠水庫) watershed, a source within the ministry said.
The ministry originally had three proposals for the Taipei-Yilan section of the railway, two of which were shorter, but crossed the watershed, while the ministry-proposed route, although longer, completely avoids it.
Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) approved the ministry’s decision yesterday after being briefed on the issue at a meeting and is expected to announce the plan in Yilan in the coming days.
Photo: Cheng Wei-chi, Taipei Times
While the chosen route is the most expensive option, transport time would be slower by only 30 seconds to 1 minute, the source said.
It ultimately decided that ensuring a clean water supply for the residents of the greater Taipei area superseded any other consideration, the source added.
The high-speed rail line would increase transport capacity between Taipei and Yilan, and decrease the number of people who would otherwise drive or use the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) services, the source said.
It would provide travelers with an additional travel option to eastern Taiwan, while addressing a lack of sufficient transport capacity between New Taipei City’s Shulin District (樹林) and Keelung City’s Qidu District (七堵), the source added.
The Chinese-language United Daily News reported that New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi (侯友宜) suggested at yesterday’s meeting that the planned line cross near Taiwan’s northeastern coast.
Hou suggested that the ministry consider the option of the new line sharing the TRA’s Pingsi Station (平溪), as this would benefit local development.
Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) said that the plans would undergo some adjustments as a result of yesterday’s decision, adding that the planned Minsheng-Xizhi mass rapid transit line, which has passed its environmental impact assessment, would also need adjustments to its planned route, the newspaper said.
Yilan County Commissioner Lin Tzu-miao (林姿妙) said that the ministry’s decision to circumvent the reservoir’s watershed is to be applauded, as it would minimize the environmental impact.
Lin Tzu-miao said that she hopes the project would be expedited to address Yilan’s relative isolation due to its location.
Yilan Mayor Chiang Tsung-yuan (江聰淵) said that the ministry’s decision faces a significant obstacle — the environmental impact assessment — and the route’s extra length could lead to delays in the project.
Citing as an example the 12.9km Hsuehshan Tunnel (雪山隧道), which took many years to construct, Chiang said that he hopes the selected route, which would require 11.4km of tunneling and path construction, would not take more than 10 years to build.
EXTENSION: The route chosen by the transport ministry was the longest of three options, and the most expensive, but it would ensure clean water for greater Taipei The Ministry of Transportation and Communications yesterday finalized route for a Taiwan High Speed Rail line to Yilan County, which avoids the Feitsui Water Reservoir’s (翡翠水庫) watershed, a source within the ministry said. The ministry originally had three proposals for the Taipei-Yilan section of the railway, two of which were shorter, but crossed the watershed, while the ministry-proposed route, although longer, completely avoids it. Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) approved the ministry’s decision yesterday after being briefed on the issue at a meeting and is expected to announce the plan in Yilan in the coming days. While the chosen route is the most expensive
ATTACK UNLIKELY: China would become ‘pariahs internationally for just the wanton destruction of Taiwan’ and would have little to gain from it, Trump’s security adviser said A top White House official on Friday urged Taiwan to build up its military capabilities to protect against a possible invasion by China, saying that Beijing would have that ability in 10 to 15 years. US President Donald Trump’s National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien told the Aspen Security Forum that a missile attack by China against Taiwan would be much too destructive. An amphibious attack is a possibility, although at the moment it is beyond China’s capability, he said. However, China could combine that threat with “gray zone” operations, embargoes, harassment and other actions to intimidate the nation if Taipei does not build
REGISTRATION ROW: The online marketplace stopped taking new orders before noon yesterday and said that it would help sellers complete their deals before going offline E-commerce site Taobao Taiwan (淘寶台灣) yesterday announced that it would leave the Taiwanese market at the end of this year, after being told by the Investment Commission to register as a Chinese entity. It made the “tough decision” to leave Taiwan, effective Jan. 1 next year, due to “market uncertainties” and was in talks with its employees over a redundancy scheme, the company said in a statement. It would also help sellers on its site complete their outstanding deals to protect their rights and those of the buyers, it said. The company said that it had decided to stop taking new orders before
UNFOUNDED CLAIMS: Hong Kong air traffic controllers told a Taiwanese aircraft to leave due to ‘dangerous activities,’ but the military said it found no reason for the claim Minister of National Defense Yen De-fa (嚴德發) yesterday called on Beijing to respect international aviation rules and refrain from undermining air travel after Hong Kong air traffic controllers on Thursday morning warned off a Taiwanese flight. A military chartered supply flight operated by Uni Air (立榮航空) from Kaohsiung to the Taipei-controlled Pratas Islands (Dongsha Islands, 東沙群島) in the South China Sea was forced to turn back on its way to the disputed islands, where 250 Taiwanese coast guard personnel are deployed, the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) said. Hong Kong air traffic controllers denied the Uni Air ATR2-600 aircraft authorization to enter the