The Taichung Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) system launched a trial service yesterday, with many hailing it as an important first for the city that has been a long time coming.
The MRT’s Green Line is 16.71km long, runs from Beitun Main Station in the northeast to Taichung High Speed Rail Station in the southwest and has 18 stations.
Starting yesterday, free rides are being offered to passengers with electronic metro passes for one month until the line officially opens.
A high-school student surnamed Lin (林) said he arrived at Taichung City Hall Station early in the morning for a ride on the new service.
Being able to commute to and from school, like students in Taipei, will make his life easier, Lin said.
Another passenger, surnamed Wang (王), said that Taichung residents have waited a long time for a metro system.
A Taichung native surnamed Yang (楊), who is studying at a university in Tainan, said he returned home just to try the new MRT yesterday.
The MRT system carried about 4,700 passengers in the first two hours after it opened at 7am, the Taichung Mass Rapid Transit Co said.
In the first three weeks, from yesterday to Dec. 6, the trains are to operate between 7am and 8pm daily, running every five minutes during peak hours and every eight minutes in off-peak hours.
On Dec. 7, normal service is to begin, in preparation for the official opening on Dec. 19, and free rides are to end on Dec. 15, the company said.
Taichung Mayor Lu Shiow-yen (盧秀燕) hailed the MRT system as a milestone in the development of public transport in Taichung.
The plan to build an MRT system in the city was initiated in 2004, and construction began in 2009 during the tenure of then-Taichung mayor Jason Hu (胡志強), who was succeeded in 2014 by Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍), currently the minister of transportation and communications.
Lu was elected mayor in 2018.
The chief mechanic in an air force unit from which an F-16 and its pilot went missing last week died on Sunday evening in what might have been a suicide, the Ministry of National Defense said yesterday. The ministry in a statement confirmed media reports that the mechanic, surnamed Huang (黃), “hurt himself” at a military barracks. Huang was taken to Hualien Armed Forces General Hospital after he was found unresponsive in the barracks, but doctors could not revive him, the ministry said. Huang served in the 26th Tactical Fighter Group of the 5th Tactical Fighter Wing, the same unit as the missing
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) last night said that it had no comment about reports that a senior US Navy officer had arrived in Taipei for a visit. Several media outlets reported that Rear Admiral Michael Studeman, director of intelligence of the US Indo-Pacific Command, arrived at Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) on a special charter flight at about 7pm. The schedule of a “senior US official” in Taiwan would not be made public, the ministry said in a news release, without confirming the visit or the official’s identity. Interactions and exchanges between Taiwan and the US are common, and visits
NON-TYPICAL: Apart from Atsani, storms in autumn missed Taiwan, rainfall has been lower and average temperatures have been higher, a CWB forecaster said The current water shortage is expected to worsen in the next few months, with the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) yesterday forecasting a colder, dryer winter than normal. With winter starting next week, the bureau at a media briefing outlined the expected conditions through February and reviewed autumn’s significant weather events. Weather Forecast Center director Lu Kuo-cheng (呂國臣) said that autumn this year had three major characteristics: First, 13 tropical storms and typhoons formed from September to this month, up from 11 in the same period last year, Lu said. Apart from Atsani, for which sea and land alerts were issued in Taiwan, the tropical
The US’ inclusion of Taiwan in its Indo-Pacific Strategy is geared toward weakening Beijing’s influence in Southeast Asia, as well as providing a Blue Dot Network to counter China’s Belt and Road Initiative, a senior Executive Yuan member said yesterday. Taiwan and the US would be seeking further collaboration on infrastructure construction and energy, said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity. The US and Taiwan signed a memorandum of understanding on the Framework to Strengthen Infrastructure, Finance and Market Cooperation on Sept. 17, which would see the Ministry of Finance and the US Department of the Treasury establishing respective task