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Accompanying Executive Yuan Premier to Inspect Circular Line East Section Progress, Mayor Chiang Points Out that Improving Traffic Management in Neihu Technology Park is a Top Priority for DORTS

On April 28, Executive Yuan Premier Chen Chien-jen led colleagues from the central government to Taipei City Songshan Station to inspect Circular line Station Y36 and gain an understanding of the Circular line east section planning status. Taipei City Mayor Chiang Wan-an thanked the Executive Yuan and the central government for their concern about Taipei MRT project progress. Currently tasks related to detailed design, land acquisition, and construction of the Circular line east section are underway. Construction is scheduled to begin within two years and be completed in nine and a half years.

DORTS stated that the total length of Circular line east section is 13.25 km, and construction of the entire line will be underground. With a total budget of NT$102.486 billion (NT$20.256 billion from the central government and NT$82.23 billion from Taipei City Government), there will be ten stations and one depot. Furthermore, four of the stations will intersect with the Minsheng-Xizhi line, the Songshan-Xindian line, the Bannan line, and the Tamsui-Xinyi line. In addition to providing transfer services, it will also closely connect 14 administrative districts, including Wenshan, Xindian, Nangang, and Xinyi etc., in Taipei City and New Taipei City to fully develop the comprehensive benefits of the metropolitan area.

Mayor Chiang stated that the approval of the Circular line east section has considerable significance for the Taipei Metropolitan Area. Following the completion of construction, it will connect with Circular line north section & south section and the currently-operational Circular line Phase I to form a 49.3 km capital city circular line with 42 stations. The capital city circular line will become a very important route in Taipei metropolitan area like the Tokyo Yamanote Line in Japan, passengers are able to reach destinations by taking only one train. Mayor Chiang also pointed out that the Circular line east section will be an important step in solving traffic issues in Neihu; moreover, the Minsheng-Xizhi line will also help to solve traffic congestion problems in Taipei City. Both lines will be solutions to alleviate traffic bottlenecks in Neihu Technology Park.

Mayor Chiang explained that there is a large amount of traffic along the route of Circular line east section (Ruiguang Road, Jiuzong Road, and Songren Road, etc.), and specifically instructed DORTS to study a comprehensive traffic management so as to reduce negative impacts which will be caused by the construction in Neihu Technology Park. 

During his speech, Mayor Chiang Wan-an further stated that the Circular line north section & south section and Wanda line Phase II, which are currently being promoted by Taipei City Government, have been impacted by a number of unfavorable bidding factors such as the epidemic, labor shortages, materials shortages, and rising prices. Related revisions for the tender documents have already begun, and Mayor Chiang asked the central government to provide full support in the future to enable the construction of the overall MRT route network in Taipei Metropolitan Area to be completed as soon as possible and promote local prosperity and development. 

DORTS explained that the capital city circular line will have 14 stations where direct transfers will be possible with the MRT, light rail, Taiwan Railways, and Taiwan High Speed Rail; furthermore, it will connect with a series of 16 radiating routes, covering all MRT routes in Taipei Metropolitan Area. As the world’s most reliable MRT company, Taipei Rapid Transit Corporation (TRTC) will provide the best overall service. In 10 years with the circular-shaped route network along with Xinyi eastern extension and the Wanda line, which are currently under construction, Taipei MRT route network will reach 210.4 km in length with more than 182 stations and dramatically improve the efficiency of transportation in Taipei City and New Taipei City.

DORTS further elaborated that Circular line Station Y36 will have transfer connections with Taiwan Railways and MRT Songshan Station in the future. It is estimated that it will have a considerably large travel volume. In order to greatly improve the convenience of transfers, DORTS will establish the platform level of Station Y36 beneath Taiwan Railways Songshan Station and MRT Songshan Station. It will be possible to divert the flow of passengers transferring to Taiwan Railways and the MRT, and achieve joint-construction of three types of railways.

DORTS specially mentioned that the level of difficulty and risks for Circular line east section construction were considerably high as it passes beneath the Keelung River, Taiwan Railways Songshan Station, Taiwan High Speed Rail tunnels, and MRT routes and stations. In order to implement the co-construction of three types of railways and take the safety of operating stations into account, auxiliary methods will be adopted. In order to cope with diaphragm walls and foundation piles beneath operating stations, project planning has adopted narrowing the construction scope and implementation in multiple stages in order to diversify risks and effectively control the schedule.