Clockwise from top: Taipei skyline, Grand Hotel, Far Eastern Plaza, National Palace Museum, Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall, Jiantan Station
|Nickname(s): The City of Azaleas|
Satellite image of Taipei City
|Country||Republic of China (Taiwan)|
|City seat||Xinyi District|
|• Type||Taipei City Government|
|• Mayor||Hau Lung-pin (KMT)|
|• Special municipality||271.7997 km2 (104.9425 sq mi)|
|• Water||2.7 km2 (1.0 sq mi) 1.0%|
|Population (January 2012)|
|• Special municipality||2,652,959 (Ranked 4 of 22)|
|• Urban||8,357,000 (March '13)|
|Time zone||CST (UTC+8)|
|Bird||Formosan Blue Magpie (Urocissa caerulea)|
|Flower||Azalea (Rhododendron nudiflorum)|
|Tree||Banyan (India laurel fig, Ficus microcarpa)|
|The metropolitan area (or tri-cities) of Taipei includes Taipei, New Taipei, and Keelung.|
|Traditional Chinese||臺北市 or 台北市|
|Literal meaning||Northern Taiwan City|
Taipei, officially known as Taipei City (//; Chinese: 臺北市 or 台北市; pinyin: Táiběi Shì; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Tâi-pak Chhī), is the capital of the Republic of China (Taiwan). Situated at the northern tip of Taiwan, Taipei is located on the Tamsui River; it is about 25 km (16 mi) southwest of Keelung, a port city on the Pacific Ocean. It lies in the Taipei Basin, an ancient lakebed bounded by the two relatively narrow valleys of the Keelung and Xindian rivers, which join to form the Tamsui River along the city's western border. The city proper is home to an estimated 2,618,772 people. Taipei, New Taipei, and Keelung together form the Taipei–Keelung metropolitan area with a population of 6,900,273. They are administered under three municipal governing bodies. "Taipei" sometimes refers to the whole metropolitan area, while "Taipei City" refers to the city proper. Taipei City proper is surrounded on all sides by New Taipei.
Taipei is the political, economic, and cultural center of Taiwan. Considered to be a global city, Taipei is part of a major industrial area. Railways, high speed rail, highways, airports, and bus lines connect Taipei with all parts of the island. The city is served by two airports – Taipei Songshan and Taiwan Taoyuan.
- 1 History
- 2 Culture
- 3 Romanization
- 4 Geography
- 5 Administrative divisions
- 6 History
- 7 Economy
- 8 Government
- 9 Transportation
- 10 Demographics
- 11 Education
- 12 Sports
- 13 Media
- 14 International relations
- 15 Gallery
- 16 See also
- 17 Notes and references
- 18 External links
Taipei was founded in the early 18th century under the Qing Dynasty rule and became an important center for overseas trade in the 19th century. The Qing Dynasty made Taipei the provincial capital of Taiwan in 1886 when Taiwan was separated from Fujian Province to be its own province of the dynasty.
Empire of Japan
Japan acquired Taiwan in 1895 from Qing Dynasty under the Treaty of Shimonoseki after the First Sino-Japanese War. Taiwan became a colony of Imperial Japan with Taipei as its capital, in which Taipei was administered under the Taihoku Prefecture. Taiwan's Japanese rulers embarked on an extensive program of advanced urban planning that featured extensive railroad links. A number of Taipei landmarks and cultural institutions date from this period.
Republic of China
The Republic of China took over Taiwan in 1945 following Japanese surrender. After losing Mainland China to the Chinese Communist Party in the Chinese Civil War, the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) relocated the ROC government to Taiwan and declared Taipei the provisional capital of the Republic of China in December 1949. In 1990 Taipei provided the backdrop for the Wild Lily student rallies that moved Taiwanese society from one-party rule to multi-party democracy. The city is today home to Taiwan's democratically elected national government.
Commemorative sites and museums
The National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall is a famous monument, landmark and tourist attraction that was erected in memory of General Chiang Kai-shek, former President of the Republic of China. The structure stands at the east end of Memorial Hall Square, site of the National Concert Hall and National Theater and their adjacent parks as well as the memorial. The landmarks of Liberty Square stand within sight of Taiwan's Presidential Building in Taipei's Zhongzheng District.
The National Taiwan Museum sits nearby in what is now 228 Peace Memorial Park and has worn its present name since 1999. The museum is Taiwan's oldest, founded on October 24, 1908 by Taiwan's Japanese colonial government (1895-1945) as the Taiwan Governor's Museum. It was launched with a collection of 10,000 items to celebrate the opening of the island's North-South Railway. In 1915 a new museum building opened its doors in what is now 228 Peace Memorial Park. This structure and the adjacent Governor's residence (now Presidential Office Building, served as the two most recognizable public buildings in Taiwan during its period of Japanese rule.
The National Palace Museum is a vast art gallery and museum built around a permanent collection centered on ancient Chinese artifacts. It should not be confused with the Palace Museum in Beijing (which it is named after); both institutions trace their origins to the same institution. The collections were divided in the 1940s as a result of the Chinese Civil War. The National Palace Museum in Taipei now boasts a truly international collection while housing one of the world's largest collections of artifacts from ancient China.
The strikingly designed Shung Ye Museum of Formosan Aborigines stands just 200 metres across the road from the National Palace Museum. The museum offers magnificent displays of art and historical items by Taiwanese aborigines along with a range of multimedia displays.
The Taipei Fine Arts Museum was established in 1983 as the first museum in Taiwan dedicated to modern art. The museum is housed in a building designed for the purpose that takes inspiration from Japanese designs. Most art in the collection is by Taiwanese artists since 1940. Over 3,000 art works are organized into 13 groups.
The National Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall near Taipei 101 in Xinyi District is named in honor of a founding father of the Republic of China, Sun Yat-sen. The hall, completed on May 16, 1972. originally featured exhibits that depicted revolutionary events in China at the end of the Qing Dynasty. Today it functions as multi-purpose social, educational, concert and cultural center for Taiwan's citizens.
Taipei 101 is a 101-floor landmark skyscraper that claimed the title of world's tallest building when it opened in 2004, a title it held for six years before relinquishing it to the Burj Kalifa in Dubai. Designed by C.Y. Lee & Partners and constructed by KTRT Joint Venture, Taipei 101 measures 509 m (1,670 ft) from ground to top, making it the first skyscraper in the world to break the half-kilometer mark in height. Built to withstand typhoon winds and earthquake tremors, its design incorporates many engineering innovations and has won numerous international awards. Taipei 101 remains one of the tallest skyscrapers in the world and holds LEED's certification as the world's largest "green" building. Its shopping mall and its indoor and outdoor observatories draw visitors from all over the world. Taipei 101's New Year's Eve fireworks display is a regular feature of international broadcasts.
The National Theater and Concert Hall stand at Taipei's Liberty Square and host events by foreign and domestic performers. Other leading concert venues include Zhongshan Hall at Ximen and the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall near Taipei 101.
A new venue, the Taipei Performing Arts Center, is under construction and slated to open in 2015. The venue will stand near the Shilin Night Market and will house three theaters for events with multi-week runs. The architectural design, by Rem Koolhaas and OMA, was determined in 2009 in an international competition. The same design process is also in place for a new Taipei Center for Popular Music and Taipei City Museum.
Shopping and recreation
Taipei is known for its many night markets, the most famous of which is the Shilin Night Market in the Shilin District. The surrounding streets by Shilin Night Market are extremely crowded during the evening, usually opening late afternoon and operating well past midnight. Most night markets feature individual stalls selling a mixture of food, clothing, and consumer goods.
Ximending has been a famous area for shopping and entertainment since the 1930s. Historic structures include a concert hall, a historic cinema, and the Red House Theater. Modern structures house karaoke businesses, art film cinemas, wide-release movie cinemas, electronic stores, and a wide variety of restaurants and fashion clothing stores. The pedestrian area is especially popular with teens and has been called the "Harajuku" of Taipei.
The newly developed Xinyi District is popular with tourists and locals alike for its many entertainment and shopping venues, as well as being the home of Taipei 101, a prime tourist attraction. Malls in the area include the sprawling Shin Kong Mitsukoshi complex, Taipei 101 mall, Eslite Bookstore's flagship store (which includes a boutique mall), The Living Mall, ATT shopping mall, and the Vieshow Cinemas (formerly known as Warner Village). The Xinyi district also serves as the center of Taipei's active nightlife, with several popular nightclubs concentrated in a relatively small area around the Neo19 and Taipei 101 buildings.
The thriving shopping area around Taipei Main Station includes the Taipei Underground Market and the original Shin Kong Mitsukoshi department store at Shin Kong Life Tower. Other popular shopping destinations include the Zhongshan Metro Mall, Dihua Street, the Guang Hua Digital Plaza, and the Core Pacific City. The Miramar Entertainment Park is known for its large Ferris wheel and IMAX theater.
Taipei maintains an extensive system of parks, green spaces, and nature preserves. Parks and forestry areas of note in and around the city include Yangmingshan National Park, Taipei Zoo and Da-an Forest Park. Yangmingshan National Park (located 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) north of the central city) is famous for its cherry blossoms, hot springs, and sulfur deposits. It is the home of famous writer Lin Yutang, the summer residence of Chiang Kai-shek, residences of foreign diplomats, the Chinese Culture University, the meeting place of the now defunct National Assembly of the Republic of China, and the Kuomintang Party Archives. The Taipei Zoo was founded in 1914 and covers an area of 165 hectares for animal sanctuary.
Taipei is rich in beautiful, ornate temples housing Buddhist, Taoist, and Chinese folk religion deities. The Longshan Temple, built in 1738 and located in the Wanhua District, demonstrates an example of architecture with southern Chinese influences commonly seen on older buildings in Taiwan.
Xinsheng South Road is known as the "Road to Heaven" due to its high concentration of temples, shrines, churches, and mosques. Other famous temples include Baoan Temple located in historic Dalongdong, a national historical site, and Xiahai City God Temple, located in the old Dadaocheng community, constructed with architecture similar to temples in southern Fujian. The Taipei Confucius Temple traces its history back to 1879 during the Qing Dynasty and also incorporates southern Fujian-style architecture.
Besides large temples, small outdoor shrines to local deities are very common and can be spotted on road sides, parks, and neighborhoods. Many homes and businesses may also set up small shrines of candles, figurines, and offerings. Some restaurants, for example, may set up a small shrine to the Kitchen god for success in a restaurant business.
Festivals and events
Many yearly festivals are held in Taipei. In recent years some festivals, such as the Double Ten Day fireworks and concerts, are increasingly hosted on a rotating basis by a number of cities around Taiwan.
When New Year's Eve arrives on the solar calendar, thousands of people converge on Taipei's Xinyi District for parades, outdoor concerts by popular artists, street shows, round-the clock nightlife. The high point is of course the countdown to midnight, when Taipei 101 assumes the role of the world's largest fireworks platform.
The Taipei Lantern Festival concludes the Lunar New Year holiday. The timing of the city's lantern exhibit coincides with the national festival in Pingxi, when thousands of fire lanterns are released into the sky. The city's lantern exhibit rotates among different downtown locales from year to year, including Liberty Square, Taipei 101, and Zhongshan Hall in Ximending.
On Double Ten Day, patriotic celebrations are held in front of the Presidential Building. Other annual festivals include Ancestors Day (Tomb-Sweeping Day), the Dragon Boat Festival, the Ghost Festival, and the Mid-Autumn Festival (Moon Festival).
Taipei regularly hosts its share of international events. The city recently hosted the 2009 Summer Deaflympics. This event was followed by the Taipei International Flora Exposition, a garden festival hosted from November 2010 to April 2011. The Floral Expo was the first of its kind to take place in Taiwan and only the seventh hosted in Asia; the expo admitted 110,000 visitors on February 27, 2011.
Taipei in film
- Luc Besson's Lucy (drama)
- Ang Lee's Eat Drink Man Woman (drama)
- Adam Kane and Will Tiao's Formosa Betrayed (political thriller)
- Edward Yang's Yi Yi: A One and a Two (drama)
- Edward Yang's Mahjong (drama/comedy)
- Edward Yang's A Brighter Summer Day (drama)
- Edward Yang's The Terrorizers (drama)
- Edward Yang's Taipei Story (drama)
- Edward Yang's A Confucian Confusion (drama/comedy)
- Tsai Ming-liang's Rebels of the Neon God (drama)
- Tsai Ming-liang's Vive L'Amour (drama)
- Tsai Ming-liang's The River (drama)
- Tsai Ming-liang's What Time Is It There? (drama)
- Tsai Ming-liang's Goodbye, Dragon Inn (drama)
- Tsai Ming-liang's Face (drama)
- Hou Hsiao-hsien's Dust in the Wind (drama)
- Hou Hsiao-hsien's Daughter of the Nile (drama)
- Hou Hsiao-hsien's Goodbye South, Goodbye (drama)
- Hou Hsiao-hsien's Millennium Mambo (drama)
- Hou Hsiao-hsien's Three Times (drama)
- Leon Dai's No Puedo Vivir Sin Ti (drama)
- Chung Mong-hong's Parking (drama)
- Chen Yin-jung's Formula 17 (gay/comedy)
- Zero Chou's Spider Lilies (lesbian/drama)
- Chen Hung-I's Candy Rain (lesbian/drama)
- Arvin Chen's Au Revoir Taipei (comedy)
- Chen Yu-hsun's Tropical Fish (drama/comedy)
- Te-sheng Wei's Cape No. 7 (drama/comedy)
- Doze Niu's Monga (drama/action)
- Hsiao Ya-chuan's Taipei Exchanges (drama/comedy)
- Lin Cheng-sheng's Betelnut beauty (drama/romance)
- Huo Jianqi's Snowfall in Taipei (drama/romance)
- Hsiao-tse Cheng's Miao Miao (romance/comedy)
- Sylvia Chang's 20 30 40 (romance/comedy)
- Chen Kuo-Fu's The Personals (drama/romance)
- Fen-fen Cheng's Hear Me (drama/romance)
- Hsiao-ming Hsu's Love of May (romance)
- Yee Chin-yen's Blue Gate Crossing (romance)
- Jay Chou's Secret (romance)
- Chen Kuo-Fu's Double Vision (horror/suspense)
- Chao-Bin Su's Silk (horror/suspense)
- Jia Zhangke's I Wish I Knew (Documentary)
- Wong Kar-wai's Happy Together (Hong Kong studio, filmed in three cities : Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, and Taipei)
- John Woo's A Better Tomorrow (Hong Kong studio, filmed in Hong Kong and Taipei) (action)
- Kirk Wong's Crime Story (Hong Kong studio, filmed in Hong Kong, Taipei) (action)
- David Lam's Asian Connection (Hong Kong studio, filmed in Hong Kong, Taipei) (action)
- Andrew Lau's Young and Dangerous 2 (Hong Kong studio, filmed on location in Taipei)
- Turn Left, Turn Right (Hong Kong studio, filmed on location in Taipei)
- One Missed Call 2 (Japanese studio, filmed in Taipei and Jinguashi)
- About Love (Japanese studio, filmed on three cities in Asia: Taipei, Tokyo, and Shanghai)
- Mamoru Oshii's StrayDog: Kerberos Panzer Cops (science fiction/drama)
- Takashi Miike's Rainy Dog (Japanese studio, filmed on location in Taipei) (drama)
- Takahisa Zeze's Moon Child (Japanese studio, filmed in Taipei, as the futuristic city of Mallepa) (drama)
- Robert Wise's The Sand Pebbles (Hollywood studio, filmed in Taipei, Keelung, Tamsui and Hong Kong) (drama)
- Håkon Liu's Miss Kicki (Swedish studio, filmed in Taipei, Sun Moon Lake) (drama)
- David Verbeek's R U There (The Netherlands)
- David Verbeek's How to describe a cloud (The Netherlands)
The spelling "Taipei" derives from the Wade-Giles romanization T'ai-pei. Though the name is romanized as Táiběi under the systems now (New Phonetic System/Hanyu Pinyin) and formerly (Tongyong Pinyin) in official use, the familiarity of the earlier spelling led government authorities to retain it.
Taipei City is located in the Taipei Basin in northern Taiwan. It is bordered by the Xindian River on the south and the Tamsui River on the west. The generally low-lying terrain of the central areas on the western side of the municipality slopes upward to the south and east and especially to the north, where it reaches 1,120 metres (3,675 ft) at Cising Mountain, the highest (inactive) volcano in Taiwan in Yangmingshan National Park. The northern districts of Shilin and Beitou extend north of the Keelung River and are bordered by Yangmingshan National Park. The Taipei city limits cover an area ranked sixteenth of twenty-five among all counties and cities in Taiwan.
Two peaks, Cising Mountain and Mt. Datun, rise to the northeast of the city. Cising Mountain is located on the Tatun Volcano Group and the tallest mountain at the rim of the Taipei Basin, with its main peak at 1,120 metres (3,670 ft). Mt. Datun's main peak is 1,092 metres (3,583 ft). These former volcanoes make up the western section of Yangmingshan National Park, extending from Mt. Datun northward to Mt. Caigongkeng (菜公坑山). Located on a broad saddle between two mountains, the area also contains the marshy Datun Pond.
To the southeast of the city lie the Songshan Hills and the Qingshui Ravine, which form a barrier of lush woods.
Taipei has a monsoon-influenced humid subtropical climate (Köppen: Cfa). Summers are long, hot and humid, accompanied by occasional heavy rainstorms and typhoons, while winters are short, generally mild and generally very foggy due to the northeasterly winds from the vast Siberian High being intensified by the pooling of this cooler air in the Taipei Basin. Due to Taiwan's location in the Pacific Ocean, it is affected by the Pacific typhoon season, which occurs between June and October.
|Climate data for Taipei (normals 1981–2010, extremes 1900–present)|
|Record high °C (°F)||31.9
|Average high °C (°F)||19.1
|Daily mean °C (°F)||16.1
|Average low °C (°F)||13.9
|Record low °C (°F)||−0.1
|Rainfall mm (inches)||83.2
|Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.1 mm)||14.1||14.6||15.5||14.9||14.8||15.5||12.3||14||13.8||11.9||12.4||11.7||165.5|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||80.6||71.3||89.6||92.6||113.7||121.7||179||188.9||153.7||124||99.4||90.7||1,405.2|
|Source: Central Weather Bureau|
Motor vehicle engine exhaust, particularly from motor scooters, is a source of air pollution in Taipei. The levels of fine particulate matter, including PAHs, are consistently more serious in the mornings as there is less air movement; sunlight helps clear up some pollutants, which tend to be trapped close to the ground. When compared to other Asian cities, however, Taipei has "excellent" capabilities for managing air quality in the city. Occasionally, dust storms from Mainland China can temporarily bring poor air quality to the city.
|■ Beitou District||北投區||Běitóu||Pei-t'ou||Pak-tâu||252,484||56.8216||112|
|■ Da'an District||大安區||Dà'ān||Ta-an||Tāi-an||313,710||11.3614||106|
|■ Datong District||大同區||Dàtóng||Ta-t'ung||Tāi-tông||127,092||5.6815||103|
|■ Nangang District||南港區||Nángǎng||Nan-kang||Lâm-káng||116,516||21.8424||115|
|■ Neihu District||內湖區||Nèihú||Nei-hu||Lāi-ô͘||276,217||31.5787||114|
|■ Shilin District||士林區||Shìlín||Shih-lin||Sū-lîm||287,248||62.3682||111|
|■ Songshan District||松山區||Sōngshān||Sung-shan||Siông-san||210,347||9.2878||105|
|■ Wanhua District||萬華區||Wànhuá||Wan-hua||Báng-kah||190,963||8.8522||108|
|■ Wenshan District||文山區||Wénshān||Wen-shan||Bûn-san||266,934||31.5090||116|
|■ Xinyi District||信義區||Xìnyì||Hsin-yi||Sìn-gī||226,770||11.2077||110|
|■ Zhongshan District||中山區||Zhōngshān||Chung-shan||Tiong-san||224,258||13.6821||104|
|■ Zhongzheng District||中正區||Zhōngzhèng||Chung-cheng||Tiong-chèng||161,409||7.6071||100|
The city is characterized by straight roads and public buildings of grand Western architectural styles. The city is built on a square grid configuration, however these blocks are huge by international standards (500 m (1,640.42 ft) sides). However there is little uniformed planning within these blocks; therefore lanes (perpendicular to streets) and alleys (parallel with street, or conceptually, perpendicular to the lane) spill out from the main throughways. These minor roads are not always perpendicular and sometimes cut through the block diagonally.
Although development began in the western districts of the city from trade, the eastern districts of the city have become the downtown. Many of the western districts, already in decline, have become targets of new urban renewal projects.
The region known as the Taipei Basin was home to Ketagalan tribes before the eighteenth century. Han Chinese mainly from Fujian Province of Qing Dynasty began to settle in the Taipei Basin in 1709. In the late 19th century, the Taipei area, where the major Han Chinese settlements in northern Taiwan and one of the designated overseas trade ports, Tamsui, were located, gained economic importance due to the booming overseas trade, especially that of tea exportation. In 1875, the northern part of Taiwan was separated from Taiwan Prefecture (Chinese: 臺灣府) and incorporated into the new Taipei Prefecture as a new administrative entity of the Qing Dynasty. Having been established adjoining the flourishing townships of Bangka, Dalongdong, and Twatutia, the new prefectural capital was known as Chengnei (Chinese: 城內), "the inner city", and government buildings were erected there. From 1875 (during the Qing Dynasty) until the beginning of Japanese rule in 1895, Taipei was part of Tamsui County of the Taipei Prefecture and the prefectural capital. In 1886, when Taiwan was proclaimed a province of Qing Dynasty, Taipei city was made the provincial capital. Taipei remained a temporary provincial capital before it officially became the capital of Taiwan in 1894. All that remains from the old Qing Dynasty city is the north gate. The west gate and city walls were demolished by the Japanese while the south gate, little south gate, and east gate were extensively modified by the Kuomintang (KMT) and have lost much of their original character.
As settlement for losing the First Sino-Japanese War, China ceded the island of Taiwan to the Empire of Japan in 1895 as part of the Treaty of Shimonoseki. After the Japanese take-over, Taipei, called Taihoku in Japanese, was retained as the capital and emerged as the political center of the Japanese Colonial Government. During that time the city acquired the characteristics of an administrative center, including many new public buildings and housing for civil servants. Much of the architecture of Taipei dates from the period of Japanese rule, including the Presidential Building which was the Office of the Taiwan Governor-General (Japanese: 台湾総督府〔臺灣總督府〕).
During Japanese rule, Taihoku was incorporated in 1920 as part of Taihoku Prefecture (Japanese: 台北州〔臺北州〕). It included Bangka (艋舺), Twatutia (大稻埕), and Jōnai (城內) among other small settlements. The eastern village Matsuyama (松山庄) was annexed into Taihoku City in 1938. Upon the Japanese defeat in the Pacific War and its consequent surrender in August 1945, the Kuomintang (Chinese Nationalist Party) assumed control of Taiwan. Subsequently, a temporary Office of the Taiwan Province Administrative Governor was established in Taipei City.
Martial law and modern democracy
In 1947 the KMT government under Chiang Kai-shek declared island-wide martial law in Taiwan as a result of the 2-28 Incident, which began with incidents in Taipei but led to an island-wide crackdown on the local population by forces loyal to Chiang. Two years later, on December 7, 1949, Chiang and the Kuomintang were forced to flee mainland China by the Communists at the Chinese Civil War. The refugees declared Taipei to be the provisional capital of a continuing Republic of China, with the official capital at Nanjing (Nanking) even though that city was under Communist control.
Taipei expanded greatly in the decades after 1949, and as approved on December 30, 1966 by the Executive Yuan, Taipei was declared a special centrally administered municipality on July 1, 1967 and given the administrative status of a province. In the following year, Taipei City expanded again by annexing Shilin, Beitou, Neihu, Nangang, Jingmei, and Muzha. At that time, the city's total area increased fourfold through absorbing several outlying towns and villages and the population increased to 1.56 million people.
The city's population, which had reached one million in the early 1960s, also expanded rapidly after 1967, exceeding two million by the mid-1970s. Although growth within the city itself gradually slowed thereafter — its population had become relatively stable by the mid-1990s — Taipei remained one of the world's most densely populated urban areas, and the population continued to increase in the region surrounding the city, notably along the corridor between Taipei and Keelung.
In 1990 Taipei's 16 districts were consolidated into the current 12 districts. Mass democracy rallies that year in the plaza around Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall led to an island-wide transition to multi-party democracy, where legislators are chosen via regularly scheduled popular elections, during the presidency of Lee Teng-Hui.
As the center of Taiwan's largest conurbation, Taipei has been at the center of rapid economic development in the country and has now become one of the global cities in the production of high technology and its components. This is part of the so-called Taiwan Miracle which has seen dramatic growth in the city following foreign direct investment in the 1960s. Taiwan is now a creditor economy, holding one of the world's largest foreign exchange reserves of over US$403 billion as of December 2012.
Despite the Asian financial crisis, the economy continues to expand at about 5% per year, with virtually full employment and low inflation. As of 2007[update], the nominal GDP of the core city of Taipei has accrued to nearly US$160 billion, while the metro region of Taipei has a GDP (nominal) of around US$260 billion, a record that would rank it 13th among world cities by GDP. The GDP per capita of Taipei is US$48,400, and the second highest in Asia behind Tokyo, which has a GDP per capita of US$65,453.
Taipei and its environs have long been the foremost industrial area of Taiwan, consisting of industries of the secondary and tertiary sectors. Most of the country's important factories producing textiles and apparel are located there; other industries include the manufacture of electronic products and components, electrical machinery and equipment, printed materials, precision equipment, and foods and beverages. Such companies include Shihlin Electric, CipherLab and Insyde Software. Shipbuilding, including yachts and other pleasure craft, is done in the port of Keelung northeast of the city.
Services, including those related to commerce, transportation, and banking, have become increasingly important. Tourism is a small but significant component of the local economy with international visitors totaling almost 3 million in 2008. Taipei has many top tourist attractions and contributes a significant amount to the US$6.8 billion tourism industry in Taiwan. National brands such as ASUS, Chunghwa Telecom, Mandarin Airlines, Tatung, and Uni Air, D-Link  are headquartered in Taipei City.
Taipei City is a special municipality which is directly under the Executive Yuan (Central Government) of ROC. The mayor of Taipei City had been an appointed position since Taipei's conversion to a centrally administered municipality in 1967 until the first public election was held in 1994. The position has a four-year term and is elected by direct popular vote. The first elected mayor was Chen Shui-bian of the Democratic Progressive Party. Ma Ying-jeou took office in 1998 for two terms, before handing it over to Hau Lung-pin who won the 2006 mayoral election on December 9, 2006. Both Chen Shui-bian and Ma Ying-Jeou went on to become President of the Republic of China.
Based on the outcomes of previous elections in the past decade, the vote of the overall constituency of Taipei City shows a slight inclination towards the pro-KMT camp (the Pan-Blue Coalition); however, the pro-DPP camp (the Pan-Green Coalition) also has considerable support.
Ketagalan Boulevard, where the Presidential Office Building and other government structures are situated, is often the site of mass gatherings such as inauguration and national holiday parades, receptions for visiting dignitaries, political demonstrations, and public festivals.
Taipei City is also famous for its effort in garbage recycling, which has become such a good international precedent that other countries have sent teams to study the recycling system. After the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) established a program in 1998 combining the efforts of communities, a financial resource named the Recycling Fund was made available to recycling companies and waste collectors. Manufacturers, vendors and importers of recyclable waste pay fees to the Fund, which uses the money to set firm prices for recyclables and subsidize local recycling efforts. Between 1998 and 2008, the recycling rate increased from 6 percent to 32 percent. This improvement enabled the government of Taipei to demonstrate its recycling system to the world at the Shanghai World Expo 2010.
Public transport accounts for a substantial portion of different modes of transport in Taiwan, with Taipei residents having the highest utilization rate at 34.1%. Private transport consists of motor scooters, private cars, and bicycles. Motor-scooters often weave between cars and occasionally through oncoming traffic. Respect for traffic laws, once scant, has improved with deployment of traffic cameras and increasing numbers of police roadblocks checking riders for alcohol consumption and other offenses.
Taipei Station serves as the comprehensive hub for the subway, bus, conventional rail, and high speed rail. A contactless smartcard, known as EasyCard, can be used for all modes of public transit as well as several retail outlets. It contains credits that are deducted each time a ride is taken. The EasyCard is read via proximity sensory panels on buses and in MRT stations, and it does not need to be removed from one's wallet or purse.
Taipei's public transport system, the Taipei Metro (commonly referred to as the MRT), incorporates a metro and light rail system based on advanced VAL and Bombardier technology. In addition to the rapid transit system itself, the Taipei Metro also includes several public facilities such as the Maokong Gondola, underground shopping malls, parks, and public squares. Modifications to existing railway lines to integrate them into the metro system are underway, as well as a rapid transit line to connect the city with Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport and Taoyuan County.
Beginning in 1983, surface rail lines in the city were moved underground as part of the Taipei Railway Underground Project. The Taiwan High Speed Rail system opened in 2007. The bullet trains connect Taipei with the west coast cities of Banciao, Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Taichung, Chiayi, and Tainan before terminating at Zuoying (Kaohsiung) at speeds that cut travel times by 60% or more from what they normally are on a bus or conventional train. The Taiwan Railway Administration also runs passenger and freight services throughout the entire island.
An extensive city bus system serves metropolitan areas not covered by the metro, with exclusive bus lanes to facilitate transportation. Riders of the city metro system are able to use the EasyCard for discounted fares on buses, and vice versa. Several major intercity bus terminals are located throughout the city, including the Taipei Bus Station and Taipei City Hall Bus Station.
Most scheduled international flights are served by Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport in nearby Taoyuan County. Songshan Airport at the heart of the city in the Songshan District serves domestic flights and scheduled flights to Tokyo International Airport (also known as Haneda Airport), Gimpo International Airport in Seoul, and about 15 destinations in the People's Republic of China. Songshan Airport is accessible by the Taipei Metro Neihu Line; Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport is not yet accessible by rail but a line is under construction.
Taipei City is home to 2,607,428 people, while the metropolitan area has a population of 6,776,264 people. The population of the city proper has been decreasing in recent years while the population of the adjacent New Taipei has been increasing. Due to Taipei's geography and location in the Taipei Basin as well as differing times of economic development of its districts, Taipei's population is not evenly distributed. The districts of Daan, Songshan, and Datong are the most densely populated.
In 2008, the crude birth rate stood at 7.88% while the mortality rate stood at 5.94%. A decreasing and rapidly aging population is an important issue for the city. By the end of 2009, one in ten people in Taipei was over 65 years of age. Residents who had obtained a college education or higher accounted for 43.48% of the population, and the literacy rate stood at 99.18%.
Like the rest of Taiwan, Taipei is composed of four major ethnic groups: Hoklos, Mainlanders, Hakkas, and aborigines. Although Hoklos and Mainlanders form the majority of the population of the city, in recent decades many Hakkas have moved into the city. The aboriginal population in the city stands at 12,862 (<0.5%), concentrated mostly in the suburban districts. Foreigners (mainly from Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines) numbered 52,426 at the end of 2008.
19 universities have campuses located in Taipei:
National Taiwan University (NTU) was established in 1928 during the period of Japanese colonial rule. NTU has produced many political and social leaders in Taiwan. Both pan-blue and pan-green movements in Taiwan are rooted on the NTU campus. The university has six campuses in the greater Taipei region (including New Taipei) and two additional campuses in Nantou County. The University governs farms, forests, and hospitals for educational and research purposes. The main campus is in Taipei's Da-An district, where most department buildings and all the administrative buildings are located. The College of Law and the College of Medicine are located near the Presidential Building. The National Taiwan University Hospital is a leading international center of medical research.
National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU or Shida) likewise traces its origins to the Japanese colonial period. Originally a teacher training institution, NTNU has developed into a comprehensive international university with demanding entrance requirements. The university boasts especially strong programs in the humanities and international education. Worldwide it is perhaps best known as home of the Mandarin Training Center, a program that offers Mandarin language training each year to over a thousand students from dozens of countries throughout the world. The main campus in Taipei's Da-An district, near MRT Guting Station, is known for its historic architecture and giving its name to the Shida Night Market, one of the most popular among the numerous night markets in Taipei.
Chinese language program for foreigners
- Taiwan Mandarin Institute (TMI) (福爾摩莎)
- International Chinese Language Program (ICLP) (國際華語研習所) of National Taiwan University
- Mandarin Training Center (MTC) (國語教學中心) of National Taiwan Normal University
- Taipei Language Institute (中華語文研習所)
Due to Taiwan being under American and Japanese influence over the years, the sports of baseball in particular and basketball have become popular in the city. Taipei, like the rest of the country, has featured most prominently in baseball and has often been the venue for the Asian Baseball Championship since the 1960s.
Major sporting events
Below is a list of recent sporting events hosted by the city:
- 2001 Asian Baseball Championship
- 2001 Baseball World Cup
- 2001 AFC Women's Championship
- 2004 FIFA Futsal World Championship
- 2007 Baseball World Cup
- 2009 Summer Deaflympics
Taipei will also host the 2017 Summer Universiade
The Taipei Arena it's located at the site of the former Taipei Municipal Baseball Stadium (demolished in 2000), with a capacity of over 15,000. Designed by Archasia, the arena was opened on December 1, 2005. Since opening in 2005, the arena has held more art and cultural activities (such as live concerts) than sporting events, which it was originally designed and built for. The main arena has an adjustable floor space: its minimum floor space is 60 m × 30 m (196.85 ft × 98.43 ft), and can be extended to 80 m × 40 m (262.47 ft × 131.23 ft). The Chinese Taipei Ice Hockey League (CIHL) plays out of the auxiliary arena, which is a 60 m × 30 m (196.85 ft × 98.43 ft) ice skating rink.
The Tianmu Baseball Stadium is the major basebal venue in Taipei.
Taipei has the only football-specific stadium in Taiwan, Zhongshan Soccer Stadium, which hosts the national football team. It hosts qualifiers for the FIFA World and AFC regional cups, and finals of school football tournaments. Since there are no professional football leagues in Taiwan, no other sporting events are held there, since 2009, the Taipei Stadium hosts the Soccer and Athletic events.
In 2010, a Taipei baseball team — Chung-Ching Junior Little League — won the Junior League World Series, after winning the Asia-Pacific Region, then defeating the Mexico Region and Latin America Region champions to become the International champion, and finally defeating the U.S. champion (Southwest Region), Rose Capital East LL (Tyler, Texas), 9-1.
As the capital, Taipei City is the headquarters for many television and radio stations in Taiwan and the center of some of the country's largest newspapers.
Television stations located in Taipei include the CTS Education and Culture, CTS Recreation, CTV MyLife, CTV News Channel, China Television, Chinese Television System, Chung T'ien Television, Dimo TV, Eastern Television, Era Television, FTV News, Follow Me TV, Formosa TV, Gala Television, Public Television Service, SET Metro, SET News, SET Taiwan, Sanlih E-Television, Shuang Xing, TTV Family, TTV Finance, TTV World, TVBS, TVBS-G, TVBS-NEWS, Taiwan Broadcasting System, Videoland Television Network and Taiwan Television.
Newspapers include Apple Daily, Central Daily News, The China Post, China Times, Kinmen Daily News, Liberty Times, Mandarin Daily News, Matsu Daily, Min Sheng Bao, Sharp Daily, Taipei Times, Taiwan Daily, Taiwan News, Taiwan Times and United Daily News.
Taipei is a member of the Asian Network of Major Cities 21.
Twin towns and sister cities
Taipei from Maokong
- New Taipei City
- Taipei-Keelung Metropolitan Area
- List of districts of Taipei by area
- List of districts of Taipei by population
- List of districts of Taipei by population density
- List of most expensive cities for expatriate employees (#61 in the world)
- List of schools in Taipei
- Taipei Community Services Center (offers support services to the international community)
Notes and references
- "Demographia World Urban Areas PDF (March 2013)". Demographia. Retrieved 24 November 2013.
- "Taipei City Government: Home – I. Geographic Overview". Taipei City Government. 2006-10-23. Retrieved 2009-08-04.[dead link]
- "鄉鎮市區人口及按都會區統計". Taiwan Ministry of Interior. December 2009. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
- "Methods and Term Definitions". Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics. Retrieved 2009-08-04.
- "The World According to GaWC 2008". Retrieved 2010-01-25.
- "Taipei (Taiwan) :: History – Britannica Online Encyclopedia". Britannica.com. Retrieved 2010-07-04.
- Marsh, Robert (1996). The Great Transformation. M. E. Sharpe. p. 84. ISBN 1-56324-788-7. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- Ng, Franklin (1998). The Taiwanese Americans. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 10. ISBN 0-313-29762-2. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- "Taiwan Timeline – Retreat to Taiwan". BBC News. 2000. Retrieved 2009-07-13. Taipei has never been declared the official capital but Kuomintang loyalists today generally regard it as such. In 2004 elementary textbook references stating "Nanjing is the capital of the Republic of China" were replaced with "Taipei is the location of the central government of the Republic of China."
- "National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall". 2009-05-05. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- "National Taiwan Museum: History". National Taiwan Museum. Archived from the original on April 22, 2008. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- "Taipei's National Palace Museum". BBC. Retrieved 2008-06-04.
- Nystedt, Dan (2007-06-03). "Ancient China's treasures go digital". Washington Post. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- "History and Introduction of the Hall". Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- "From History to Contemporary". Museum of Contemporary Art Taipei. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- Basulto, David (12 February 2012). "OMA’s Taipei Performing Arts Center breaks ground". ArchDaily. Retrieved 9 August 2012.
- Reid, Robert (June 2011). "Taipei Performing Arts Center will feature seismic isolators and projecting auditoriums". Civil Engineering: 14–16.
- "Taipei Performing Arts Center promises to become world-class architecture". Taiwan News. 2009-11-08. Retrieved 2010-07-22.
- "Winning designs for Taipei Performing Arts Center on display". Central News Agency. 2009-03-21. Retrieved 2010-07-22.
- "Taipei invites architects | Taipei Times, 2008.07.25". Taipeitimes.com. 2008-07-25. Retrieved 2010-07-04.
- Kelly, Robert (2007). Taiwan. Lonely Planet Publications. p. 99. ISBN 1-74104-548-7. Retrieved 2009-11-27.
- Iwabuchi, Kōichi (2004). Feeling Asian modernities: transnational consumption of Japanese TV dramas. Hong Kong University Press. p. 111. ISBN 962-209-632-8. Retrieved 2010-01-24.
- "Transformation of "Liugong Canal" – Looking Back on Xinsheng South Road". Department of Rapid Transit Systems. 2008-10-01. Retrieved 2010-07-22.
- "About Daan District". Taipei City Government. Retrieved 2010-07-22.
- "Longshan Temple, Baoan Temple, and Xiahai City God Temple: Taipei’s Glorious Heritage-Site Temples". Department of Information Technology. 2009-01-29. Retrieved 2010-07-22.
- "Taipei Confucius Temple". Datong District Office, Taipei City. 2010-05-26. Retrieved 2010-07-22.
- "About Taipei 5: Religions – Wikimania 2007, The International Wikimedia Conference". Wikimania2007.wikimedia.org. 2007-07-26. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- "CHAPTER 19 Tourism". Republic of China Yearbook 2008. ROC Government Information Office. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
- Skinner, G. William (1973). Modern Chinese society:an analytical bibliography. Stanford University Press. p. 55. ISBN 0-8047-0753-7. Retrieved 2009-08-04.
- "Hanyu Pinyin to be standard system in 2009". Taipei Times. 2008-09-18. Retrieved 2008-09-20.
- "Gov't to improve English-friendly environment". The China Post. 2008-09-18. Retrieved 2008-09-20.
- "About Taipei – Taipei Profile". Department of Information and Tourism, Taipei City Government. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
- "Geography/Population". Taipei City Government. 2004-03-29. Archived from the original on January 27, 2005. Retrieved 2009-08-11.
- Taipei City - Academia Sinica
- Living in Taipei - Mandarin Training Center, a subsidiary of National Taiwan Normal University
- Taipei, Taiwan; the sister city of Los Angeles - Los Angeles City Council
- "Köppen−Geiger Climate Classification".
- "Climate". Central Weather Bureau.
- Oung, Angelica (2007-05-04). "Taipei air pollution alarming: scientists". The Taipei Times. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- "Pollution is a major threat for Asian cities, says new report". EarthTimes. 2006-12-14. Retrieved 2010-07-22.
- "Poor air quality forecast due to Chinese sandstorm". The China Post. 2008-03-01. Retrieved 2010-07-22.
- "Administrative Districts". Taipei City Government. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
- Jones, Ian (2008). City Museums and City Development. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 102. ISBN 0-7591-1180-4. Retrieved 2009-08-14.
- "History". Taipei City Government. 2004-03-29. Archived from the original on May 7, 2005. Retrieved 2009-08-11.
- Kelly, Robert (2007). Taiwan. Lonely Planet Publications. p. 46. ISBN 1-74104-548-7. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- "History of Taipei". Taipei City Government. Retrieved 2009-08-11.[dead link]
- Marsh, Robert (1996). The Great Transformation. M. E. Sharpe. p. 85. ISBN 1-56324-788-7. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- Republic of China Yearbook. Kwang Hwa Publishing Co. 2002. p. 120. ISBN 957-9227-35-7.
- Kwok, R. Yin-Wang (2005). Globalizing Taipei: the political economy of spatial development. Routledge. p. 163. ISBN 0-415-35451-X. Retrieved 2010-01-26.
- "National Statistics, Republic of China – Latest Indicators". Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics. Retrieved 2010-03-15.
- "Taipei City Has Second-highest Per Capita GDP in Asia: TIER". China Economic News Service. 2009-03-19. Retrieved 2009-07-13.
- "Taipei City Today". Taipei City Government. 2004-08-17. Retrieved 2009-08-11.[dead link]
- "歷年觀光外匯收入統計". Tourism Bureau, Ministry of Transportation and Communication. Retrieved 2010-01-24.
- "97年臺閩地區主要觀光遊憩區遊客人次月別統計". Tourism Bureau, Ministry of Transportation and Communication. Retrieved 2010-01-24.
- "Euromonitor International's Top City Destination Ranking". 2010-01-20. Retrieved 2010-01-26.
- "Taiwan's tourism revenue on the rise: survey". Focus Taiwan News Channel. 2010-07-14. Retrieved 2010-07-15.
- "ASUS set to storm eBook reader market". 2010-01-25. Retrieved 2010-01-26.
- "Chunghwa Telecom 2008 Form 20-F filed with the U.S. SEC." Chunghwa Telecom. Retrieved on June 2, 2010.
- "Contact Us." Mandarin Airlines. Retrieved on March 15, 2010. "台北總公司: 105台北市民生東路三段134號13樓."
- "Company Profile". Tatung Company. Retrieved 2010-01-24.
- "Directory: World Airlines." Flight International. March 30–5 April 2004. 88.
- "關於立榮航空." at the Wayback Machine (archived January 3, 2008) Uni Air. January 3, 2008. Retrieved on March 15, 2010.
- "Global Operations – Global Headquarters". D-Link Corporation. Retrieved 2010-10-20.
- Kwok, R. Yin-Wang (2005). Globalizing Taipei. Routledge. p. 201. ISBN 0-415-35451-X. Retrieved 2009-08-10.
- Bradsher, Keith (2006-12-10). "Taiwan Leader's Party Wins in Mayoral Vote, but Recount Is Sought". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
- "Elections 2006: Election results a headache for Ma". Taipei Times. 2006-12-10. Retrieved 2009-08-10.
- "KMT wins two-thirds majority". Taipei Times. 2008-01-13. Retrieved 2009-08-10.
- "Rain dampens enthusiasm for protest". Taipei Times. 2006-09-11. Retrieved 2009-08-10.
- "Pro-localization groups stage rally on Ma's 100th day". Taipei Times. 2008-08-30. Retrieved 2009-08-10.
- "Clear Ketagalan ahead of Double Ten, Wang urges". Taipei Times. 2006-09-06. Retrieved 2009-08-10.
- "Recycling: Taiwan’s Way of Life". Taiwan Review. 2010-03-01. Retrieved 2010-08-31.
- "Only 13% using Taiwan's public transport". The China Post/Asia News Network. 2010-02-06. Retrieved 2010-02-08.
- "Metro Tickets". Taipei Rapid Transit Corporation. Archived from the original on August 22, 2008. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
- "Taipei Main Station Project". Railway Reconstruction Bureau, Ministry of Transportation and Communications. Retrieved 2011-02-23.
- "CHAPTER 13 Transportation and Telecommunications". Republic of China Yearbook 2008. ROC Government Information Office. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
- "Traffic chaos expected in Xinyi". Taipei Times. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
- "Demographical Overview". Taipei City Government. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
- "Premier agrees to suspend sales of state-owned prime city land". Central News Agency. 2010-03-02. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
- "Taiwan's elderly population reaches one in 10: interior ministry". Central News Agency. 2010-01-23. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
- "National Taiwan University – About NTU". Web.archive.org. 2007-08-06. Archived from the original on 2007-08-06. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- Taipei Sister city list Taipei City Council
- "Taipei City Council". Retrieved 2007-02-24.
- "International Cooperation: Sister Cities". Seoul Metropolitan Government. www.seoul.go.kr. Archived from the original on 10 December 2007. Retrieved 26 January 2008.
- "Seoul -Sister Cities [via WayBackMachine]". Seoul Metropolitan Government (archived 2012-04-25). Retrieved 2013-08-23.
- "Sister Cities International (SCI)". Sister-cities.org. Retrieved 2013-04-21.
- "Phoenix Sister Cities". Phoenix Sister Cities. Archived from the original on 2013-07-24. Retrieved 2013-08-06.
- "Miasta partnerskie Warszawy". um.warszawa.pl. Biuro Promocji Miasta. 2005-05-04. Retrieved 2008-08-29.[dead link]
- "Sister Cities". Dallas-ecodev.org. Retrieved May 23, 2010.
- "Twin cities of Riga". Riga City Council. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- "Partnerská města HMP" [Prague - Twin Cities HMP]. Portál „Zahraniční vztahy“ [Portal "Foreign Affairs"] (in Czech). 2013-07-18. Archived from the original on 2013-06-25. Retrieved 2013-08-05.
|Find more about Taipei at Wikipedia's sister projects|
|Definitions and translations from Wiktionary|
|Media from Commons|
|Quotations from Wikiquote|
|Source texts from Wikisource|
|Textbooks from Wikibooks|
|Travel guide from Wikivoyage|
|Learning resources from Wikiversity|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Taipei.|
|Capital of the Republic of China