Regarding Taichung city’s mass rapid transit system, on September 18, Taichung city’s Deputy Mayor Xiao Jia-Qi expressed that in cooperation with the connecting MRT Green Line to the High Speed Rail WuRi Station, if the city government can change its city planning schedule by shortening it, the central government initially agrees to begin construction in 2006. The city government hopes that the construction would be done entirely under the supervision of the Bureau of Transportation, so as to avoid the pitfalls of Kaohsiung city’s MRT BOT incident. The city government also hoped that the funds for building the MRT system would have to come entirely from the city government’s coffers, but it is hoped that with the redevelopment of the DaQing area, an increased income from this source would be put into the costs of constructing the MRT.
Deputy Mayor Xiao pointed out that the Executive Yuan has already ratified the priority lines of the Taichung city MRT in November 2004. It stretches from the High Speed Rail WuRi Station; pass Wen Shin Road to BeiTun, a total of 16.5km. The entire line will be elevated above ground, with 15 stations, amongst them, BeiTun SongZhu Station, DaQing Station and WuRi Station will be built jointly with Taiwan Rail. The total cost will be NT$28.7 billion. The city government also hopes that extra stations will be built in conjunction with some major city developments, such as near the outdoor amphitheatre. And since it will be an elevated railway, the city government also hopes that the construction would take into consideration the maintenance of the city’s appearance as well as pay attention to the problem of noice pollution.