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Accompanying Executive Yuan Premier to Inspect Taipei City Section of Wanda Line, Mayor Chiang Strives to Obtain Funding for Circular Line North & South Section and Wanda Line

The overall construction progress of Wanda line Phase I, which is currently under construction, is at 68%, and it is expected to be completed in late 2027. On August 18, Executive Yuan Premier Chen Chien-jen led colleagues from the central government, and they were accompanied by Mayor Chiang Wan-an to inspect Kalah Station MRT construction, which is located on Wanda Rd. in Taipei City, in order to gain an on-site understanding of the construction progress.

Taipei City DORTS stated that Mayor Chiang expressed special thanks to the Executive Yuan for their support of green railway construction in Taipei City. Nevertheless, due to factors such as increasing international raw material costs, the impact of the Russia-Ukraine War, and labor and materials shortages brought about by the pandemic, the funding is substantially insufficient for Wanda line Phase I, which is currently under construction, and Wanda line Phase II and the Circular line north & south section, for which the awarding of contracts is still underway.

DORTS stated that revisions to three plans will require an estimated additional NT$75.685 billion in funding, of which NT$42.7 billion requires approval by the central government before it can be allocated. Mayor Chiang urged the central government to approve the planning revisions, subsidy increases, and scheduling extensions as soon as possible in order to speed up the implementation of follow-up construction.

During his speech, Premier Chen stated that labor shortages, materials shortages, and increases in the international prices of raw materials brought about by the pandemic have all led to higher construction costs, and consequently many tenders of public works have been facing problems, such as insufficient funds. Premier Chen pointed out that all departments of the Executive Yuan will fully support the funding of the projects, and are required to review the causes and to seek countermeasures.

During his speech, Mayor Chiang mentioned that the DORTS team has abundant construction experience, and in addition to having the capability of overcoming construction obstacles, they also never forget to insist on improving construction quality. After all, the MRT is a project designed to last for a century, and a high-quality MRT system is a symbol of urban progress. Mayor Chiang also praised Wanda line Phase I construction for winning the affirmation of professional organizations such as the Public Construction Commission (Golden Quality Award), Taipei City Government (Award of Excellence), and Taiwan Concrete Institute. During the process of construction, DORTS has also adopted necessary measures to mitigate impacts on the environment and traffic, in order to complete construction projects safely, on schedule, and while maintaining quality with minimal impacts on people’s lives.

DORTS pointed out that through the diligent efforts of the construction team, on the Wanda line not only have engineering difficulties with underground construction been overcome to successfully complete a lengthy tunnel which crosses the Xindian River, but a three-level underground station structure has also been smoothly completed. In addition, in order to implement energy conservation and carbon reduction, a ceilingless design has been adopted for public areas in the station hall and platform levels. Furthermore, local cultural characteristics have been integrated into the public artwork at the station in the belief that after it is opened for operations in the future, it will provide the public with a comfortable riding experience.   

DORTS emphasized that the Executive Yuan approved Wanda line construction, which spans a total length of 22.8km, in 2010. Of this, Wanda line Phase I is 9.5km in length with a total of nine underground stations, four of which will be established in Taipei City. However, because the route traverses locations in Tucheng, Zhonghe and Yonghe districts and then enters a major road in downtown Taipei via the Huazhong Bridge as well as relatively old city districts, after construction of Wanda line is completed and it is opened for operations, it will play a very important role in the improvement of transportation and the promotion of regional development.