Sunday, July 11, 2010

Schemes For Cycling's Eastern "Green Highway"

The Ministry of Transportation has unveiled its new scheme to build a recreational highway for bicycles on Taiwan's East Coast. According to the MOTC:

The project will be conducted by Tourist Bureau, Taiwan Railway Administration, Institute of Transportation, and Directorate General of Highways. The project uses Provincial Highway#2, #9, and #11 to string up the eastern area’s local bicycle paths network. In the mean time, it is expected to combine popular bicycle paths with the nearby train stations or tourist service centers, providing the eastern area a complete bicycle paths network.
A budget of NT791million has been allocated for the project under the Economic Revitalization Policy, which seems to be heavily reliant on tourism related infrastructure projects that seek to realign local industries from traditional modes of production to more service and entertainment related industries.

Michael Turton touches upon the government's eagerness to drive construction and fuel tourism in an excellent post on water. here

One of the main benefits of such a program may be to make recreational cycling safer and protect cyclists from the caravans of tourist busses that have been clogging the highways. The real trick is to see if the government agencies involved will actually consult cyclists for input and if this system will expand beyond recreational cycling to encompass cycling as a means of transportation and not just recreation.

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