Monday, December 23, 2013

Tainan Proposes Monorail System

Tainan has proposed building a monorail, which it calls a "light metro" (輕量捷運), and which would run from near the intersection of Xiaodong and Zhonghua Roads to Anping and connect to planned bus transfer stations.  Tainan's Transportation Commissioner Zhang Zhengyuan (張政源) claims that a monorail would be more convenient than a light rail system, could be privately run, would cost half as much as light rail (?!) and, since it could be built above medians, construction wouldn't disrupt traffic.  He also claimed that travel times could be reduced to less than 10 minutes.  The city government hopes to conduct a viability study next year.
While I'm glad Tainan is taking some tentative steps to building a rail system, I can't help but be skeptical about Tainan's choice of mode when they claim that an elevated monorail would be cheaper than an at-grade light rail system.  Of course, it will be a long time before we know if anything will come of this at all.

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