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The County Government Improves Road Infrastructure to Develop Kinmen into an Island of Happiness

The County Government Improves Road Infrastructure to Develop Kinmen into an Island of Happiness
Reporter: Yang Shuei-Yong/County Government

Kinmen Magistrate Chen Fu-Hai, feeling the importance of infrastructure as it is crucial to the sustainable development of Kinmen, began to lead his county government team to carry out major road widening and construction projects right after he assumed office. For example, the construction in the first construction area on Huandao N. Road has been completed, and the area has been opened to traffic; the construction of Huandao S. Road and Huandao W. Road has also been completed; and the 1-1 road widening project are being proactively implemented. During yesterday’s briefing, Magistrate Chen used amazing 3D animation to demonstrate to local people his administration’s achievements in road infrastructure development over the past two years and to help them become aware of and understand the difficulty and toughness of the road infrastructure projects so that local people would understand and appreciate the administration’s dedication and efforts and share with others these inspiring road infrastructure achievements.

The first highway in Kinmen was completed in 1929. Through greening, beautification, and landscaping, it became the epitome of Kinmen’s transformation into a well-known “garden at the sea.” Now it is the mission of Magistrate Chen and his government team to continue the development of Kinmen, creating a better future by carrying out new road infrastructure projects. The county government also announced the major road widening and construction projects that it has carried out and completed over the past two years as well as the status of the construction, widening, and improvement projects that cost approximately NT$200 million and cover a length of six kilometers in total all over the island.

The planning of the county government’s major road widening and construction projects has shifted from one-dimensional to three-dimensional and comprehensive, taking such dimensions as pedestrians, drivers, the ecology, and landscape into consideration to provide local residents with a better walking/driving experience. The following are the major road widening and construction projects carried out by the county government over the past two years:

◆ The construction in the first construction area (between Gaoyang Road and Doumen Road) for the Huandao N. Road (between Gaoyang Road and Yangshan Road) Widening Project commenced on February 22, 2016 and was completed for traffic on December 10, 2016. The construction in the second construction area (between Doumen Road and Yangshan Road) is ongoing, and the project progress is managed and monitored by the county government on a regular basis.

◆ The Huandao N. Road (between Yangshan Road and Chenggong Road) Widening Project began on November 9, 2016 and is being carried out under the contract. Besides, the Huandao N. Road Section 3 (between Gaoyang Road and Ciongyi Road) Widening Project has been initiated, and the detailed design was completed this June.

◆ The Huandao S. Road Section 5 Widening and Improvement Project began on March 1, 2016 and was completed for traffic on December 9, 2016. The greening, beautification, and landscaping project is now being carried out on both sides of the road.

◆ The Huandao W. Road Section 2 (between the China Youth Corps building and the University Road intersection) Project, planned on the premise that no privately owned land should be used and only minimum street trees will be removed, began on August 13, 2016 and was completed on November 7, 2016. The planning for the Huandao N. Road Section 1 (between the China Youth Corps building and Quemoy University campus) Widening Project was initiated on March 3, 2017. The designing personnel are currently modifying the basic design results.

◆ The basic design for the 1-1 Project Road (between Shueitou Commercial Port and Sihai Road) Widening Project was approved on September 27, 2016, and the detailed design was adopted in principle on December 9 of last year. Two public hearings have been organized so far (on March 3 and April 28 this year) in accordance with regulations governing the expropriation process. Moreover, efforts will continue to coordinate on land acquisition.

Still, the county government aims for broader goals, including providing a better, safer experience for road users in Kinmen by thoroughly checking for any water stagnation on roads, poor or broken drainage, or floods as well as the causes of traffic accidents and crop loss. It was also indicated in the 3D animated video regarding the road widening projects that the road widening projects for Huandao S. Road and Huandao N. Road have been initiated, with the primary goal of broadening Huandao N. Road Sections 3 and 4 as well as Huandao S. Road Section 5 to 12 meters. Moreover, priority lanes for scooters and sidewalks will be set up on major road sections. The widened, leveled, and beautified roads will provide the highest level of protection for the safety of residents.

In terms of comprehensive planning, it was shown in the 3D animated video regarding the road widening projects that in flood-prone areas, drainage ditches will be built and roadbed and pavement improvement projects will be carried out to create a more user-friendly road environment. In addition, the road surface of Jinsha Bridge No. 2 will be elevated and the channel section will be enlarged to completely solve the flooding problems that troubled local residents. Moreover, the county government expanded its efforts outside of the island to push forward the water diversion project that had been put off for years, which laid a foundation for sustainable and adequate water supply.

As for water resource, telecommunication, and power issues that deeply affect residents, critical infrastructure will be built under the ground, cables will be installed in conduits, and manhole covers will be buried. These tasks will be carried out all at once to reduce the frequency of construction. This construction model has become an exemplary model for road infrastructure projects in Kinmen.

In addition to the focus on practicability, biological corridors will be set up at different sections, habitats will remain unobstructed, and a friendly environment that enables coexistence with nature will be created in the future. Aiming to build a green highway, the Forestry Bureau planted large trees and a variety of greenery to enhance Liaoluo Roundabout, transform the entire landscape, improve the visual aesthetics, and increase biodiversity.

Magistrate Chen once said, “We strive for the best at everything we do.” With this spirit in mind, the county government team converted Huandao N. Road and Huandao S. Road into wide and smooth two-way highways through price negotiations, exchange of land, and transfer of development rights. Moreover, the team met with townsfolks, improved accident-prone road sections, reduced the problems of water stagnation and flooding, enhanced the safety of road users, and solved the long-lasting issue of land acquisition. The team will further create a brand new experience for every road user and achieve another milestone in transport development.

The 3D animated video regarding the road widening projects, which is about 5 minutes long, focuses on the widening projects for Huandao N. Road and Huandao S. Road. The video begins with the beautiful scenery of local roads, followed by a brief description of the transformation process of these roads, major achievements in road infrastructure in the past two years since the magistrate assumed office, road problems in general, and expected outcomes of improvement. The major projects mentioned include pavement improvement projects, the Jinsha Bridge No. 2 project, water diversion from China, and installation of cables in conduits. The other projects include biological corridors, Liaoluo Roundabout, and landscaping and greening. The video ends with a prospect: benefits of these projects upon completion and the expectation that the people will easily perceive the remarkable outcomes of the road infrastructure projects.

Jinhu Township Mayor Cai Si-Hu, Li Ming-Pei, Section Chief of the Tourism Department, Wong Zih-Bao, Senior Executive Officer, and some others who attended the briefing also expressed their opinions. They suggested emphasizing and incorporating the concept of “a garden with flower-filled streets” in addition to placing importance on improving road safety in order to generate better effects. Magistrate Chen stated that such difficulties as land acquisition and road closures might be encountered during road widening or improvement processes, and it relies on the village chiefs or elected representatives to painstakingly explain on the screen to help everyone understand how difficult the road infrastructure development process is.

To become part of Kinmen, one must be passionate and have a clear idea of what the people want, said Magistrate Chen. It then requires professional knowledge to deliver administrative outcomes to the people. He also stressed the importance of regarding each road as a living being and communicating with the roads in a dynamic manner so that the devotion and efforts of the county government team may be felt.

Magistrate Chen added that all the former magistrates attempted to broaden the roads but encountered unsolvable land issues. However, after visits and explanations by the government officials and township mayors in person, the residents realized how difficult road construction was. The government also took the opportunity of the road widening projects to replace water pipes and install cables. Although these projects temporarily caused inconvenience to the residents, they understood that these were for the sake of local development and growth and for building Kinmen into a sustainable, happy, and livable island.

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  • Date:2017-12-12