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Taiwan government set for ambitious Aerotropolis
Publication Date : 28-02-2013
Taiwan's government is all set to pump $470 billion Taiwan dollars (US$15.8 billion) into the Taoyuan Aerotropolis Project, as it is one of the country's most important development projects and will guide the island's future industrial development, new Transportation Minister Yeh Kuang-shih said yesterday.
The project, launched in September 2012 and being designed for the area surrounding the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, is slated for completion in 2030.
Once the project is finished, it is expected to generate $2.3 trillion Taiwan dollars in economic benefits, bringing annual tax revenue of $84 billion Taiwan dollars and 260,000 job opportunities.
“If the project fails, it would mean the end of Taiwan, given the great importance of the project,” Yeh stressed in the interview.
As part of the project, the government will set up a third terminal at the international airport. Yeh said he hopes that the completion of architecture designs for the new terminal can happen by the end of 2014.
“We hope to set up a new terminal that not only makes passengers feel comfortable but can also serve as a new shopping centre for locals,” Yeh said.
The project will also involve the creation of a new residential community accommodating up to 15,000 households, or 40,000 to 50,000 residents. Yeh said he hopes land requisition for this community can be kicked off in mid-2014 or by the end of 2014 at the latest.
The new community will alter the living habits of residents, Yeh said, as it will be an “intelligent” community featuring green buildings, the most convenient broadband network, eco-friendly water and power consumption infrastructure, and an integrated education system from kindergartens to senior high schools.
“We should allow our imaginations to boldly play,” Yeh said, adding that the aerotropolis should closely integrate “living, production and ecology” to guide the island's future industrial development.
The government hopes to make Taiwan's economy take off again by carrying out the Taoyuan Aerotropolis Project, and will step up negotiations with Chinese and foreign aviation authorities to strive for more flight rights and to set up extensive aviation networks.
Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, which is aiming to become a transport hub for the entire East Asian region, will be capable of accommodating 60 million passengers per year in 2030, according to Yeh.
By that time, cargo volume is estimated to have reached over 4.5 million tonnes per year, while the total annual number of takeoffs and landings at the airport could be up to 500,000.
In the interview, Yeh pledged to have the new elevated Wugu-Yangmei section of the Dr. Sun Yat-sen National Freeway fully open to traffic before March 10.
In addition, he also revealed that the mass rapid transit system leading to Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport will become operational by the end of 2014.
The mileage-based freeway toll collection system is also slated to be put into practice in the summer if the related enforcement package can clear the legislative floor in the first half of the year, according to Yeh.
US$1=29.7 Taiwan dollars