Transportation in Taichung

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Taichung Railway Station

Taichung is located in central Taiwan and is the third largest city in the island country. The city offers a range of transportation options for its residents and guests.

Getting around Taichung[edit]

As there are no bus lanes to allow public transport priority access, buses can be a slow way to get around. Bus services can be very limited, even routes like the journey from the airport to the city centre only has one bus every two hours, and it can take over two hours to travel the eight kilometers by bus, due to the often heavily congested roads and a circuitous route. Only main routes, such as from the Central Train station to Tung Hai University are well served, with buses running every few minutes from competing bus companies.

There is a regular shuttle bus from The Central Station to the new High Speed Railway Station which runs every 15 minutes until 10 pm which also stops at Sogo Department store. Unlike other major cities in Taiwan, Taichung has no MRT or subway system despite funds having been allocated for that express purpose years ago.

Motorcycles, followed by automobiles, are the most widely used forms of transportation in Taichung City. Renting a scooter or motorcycle is a common way to get around the city or escaping to the countryside. Bicycles are making a comeback as a fashionable form of transport, and the government has established a limited number of segregated bicycle paths in the city to encourage this.

Motor scooters are the quickest and most convenient form of transport in Taichung, motor scooters can be rented from several places near the main central railway station from about US$6 a day.

Taichung is not a walking city, despite being very compact, as there are almost no pavements (sidewalks) it can be unpleasant to walk even short distances. Because Taichung City is flat and compact, bicycles are also a very efficient form of transport, but be prepared to sweat as it can get hot in the summer.

Taxis cost about US$3 for short rides, and about US$2–3 for every extra couple of kilometres depending on traffic.

Navigation around the city is simple, as the city's road system is designed like a bicycle wheel, with the hub at the old Central Station and the main routes radiating outwards, crossing ring roads which circle the city. Taichung Gang Road (Taichung Harbour Road), usually just called Chung Gang Road, is the major thoroughfare crossing Taichung, It is an eight-lane road which links Taichung Central Railway station to Taichung Harbour, about 25 km to the northwest.

Heading out along Chung Gang Road from the station the area around Sogo department store is reached after 2.5 km, which with department stores, cafes, restaurants and 5 star hotels, could be described as the city centre. The main long distance bus station, which has services to Taipei to the North and Kaoshiung to the South is situated at the motorway junction on Chung Gang Road 6 km out from the station. Further out of the city, up the hill which divides the city from the harbour, 10 km along Chung Gang Road is Tung Hai University and nearby Art Street, a thriving area full of students, artists and popular with foreigners.

Train service[edit]

The Taichung Downtown Bus Plaza, one block from the Taichung Train Station

Taichung Station is located on Jianguo Road (建國路). There is a small square in the front of the station, and numerous bus companies have stations within a three-minute walk of the station. They provide local bus service along with long-distance bus services, many of which are to districts or townships not served by trains. The same pass card can be used for both trains and buses and there are discounts for students and senior citizens.

Taichung Station lies on the mountain line or formally Taichung Line, which splits from the coastal line from Changhua City in the south, to Zhunan, near Hsinchu, in the north. There are regular trains to Changhua from downtown Taichung where the traveller reaches the coastal line. Several train stations lie in different districts in Taichung.

The new High Speed Rail services Metropolitan Taichung via a station in Wuri District. There are regular City Bus services with several routes running between many places and the High Speed Rail Station. There are three or more THSR trains in either direction every hour and it takes under an hour to get to Taipei in the North or Kaoshiung in the South.

MRT under construction[edit]

The Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) of Taichung is under construction and planning. The Red Line has been under construction since September 2009. The elevated section will go between Fengyuan Station and Daqing Station and is set to be finished by 2016. The Green Line, meanwhile, also known as the Wuri-Wenxin-Beitun Line, will connect Dingjiushe to Xinwuri and is estimated to completed by 2018.

BRT service[edit]

Taichung BRT vehicle

The BRT in Taichung has been planned for years. The company of Taichung BRT was established on 17 October 2012, and the construction of the Blue Line priority section lying on Taiwan Boulevard (臺灣大道) started 17 July 2013. The priority section of Blue Line, with half of the stations open, started operation on 28 July 2014, and all stations along the section will be open on 17 August 2014. Taking the BRT is for free for the first year.

The BRT service ended on 8 July 2015 because of the new policy announced on 30 March 2015. The BRT Lane was adjusted to ordinary Bus Lane, allowing its lane room to a few other routes which mainly operate along Taiwan Boulevard. From then on, the BRT Blue Line was no longer called BRT Blue Line but Bus Route 300 instead.

the former BRT Blue Line (藍線) (from 28 July 2014 to 7 July 2015)
Station Number Station Name (Chinese) Station Name (English) Location
A01 臺中火車站 Taichung Railway Station In front of Taichung Railway Station (Jianguo Rd.) (建國路)
A03 仁愛醫院 (僅西行) Jen-Ai Hospital (only westbound) Liuchuan E. Rd. (柳川東路)/Xingzhong St. (興中街) Intersection
A05 茄苳腳 Qie Dong Jiao Meichuan W. Rd. (梅川西路)/Duxin St. (篤信街) Intersection
A06 中正國小 Chung-Cheng Elementary School Daren St. (大仁街)/Yingcai Rd. (英才路) Intersection
A07 科博館 National Museum of Natural Science Jianxing Rd. (健行路)/Meicun Rd. (美村路) Intersection
A08 忠明國小 Chung-Ming Elementary School Zhongming Rd. (忠明路)/Zhongming S. Rd. (忠明南路) Intersection
A09 頂何厝 Ding He Cuo Hankou Rd. (漢口路)/Dongxing Rd. (東興路) Intersection
A10 市政府 Taichung City Hall Wenxin Rd. (文心路) Intersection
A11 新光/遠百 Shin Kong Mitsukoshi/Top City Dept. Store Huilai Rd. (惠來路) Intersection
A12 秋紅谷 Maple Valley Garden Chaofu Rd. (朝富路) Intersection
A13 福安 Fu-An Anhe Rd. (安和路) Intersection
A14 中港新城 Zhonggang New Community Zhonggong Third Rd. (中工三路)/Yongfu Rd. (永福路) Intersection
A15 中港澄清 Cheng Ching Hospital Fukang Rd. (福康路)/Zhonggong Second Rd. (中工二路) Intersection
A16 玉門路 Yumen Rd. Yumen Rd. (玉門路) Intersection
A17 榮總/東海大學 Taichung Veterans General Hospital/Tunghai University Dongda Rd. (東大路) Intersection
A18 東海別墅 Dong Hai Bie Shu Shopping District Guoji St. (國際街)/Dongyuan Ln. (東園巷) Intersection
A19 坪頂 Ping Ding Youyuan Rd. (遊園路) Intersection
A20 正英路 Zhengying Rd. Zhengying Rd. (正英路) Intersection
A21 弘光科技大學 Hungkuang University In front of Hungkuang University
A22 晉江寮 Jin Jiang Liao Dongjin E. Rd. (東晉東路) Intersection
A23 靜宜大學 Providence University In front of Providence University

Taichung City Bus[edit]

There have been slightly more than 200 routes in the network of Taichung City Bus at the present in 2015.

The fares are calculated by mileage per ride. The basic fare is NT$20 for 10 km, and the extended fare is NT$2.431*(1+5% tax included) per km and round to the nearest integer.

Operators[edit]

List of Taichung City Bus Providers
name translated name number of routes running total running mileage in kilometer (Sep. 2016 data) number of vehicles in service (Sep. 2016 data)
臺中汽車客運股份有限公司
台中客運
Taichung Bus Company, Ltd.
Taichung Bus
50 1,451.45 404
仁友汽車客運股份有限公司
仁友客運
Ren-Yeou Bus Company, Ltd.
Renyou Bus
9 329.10 73
統聯汽車客運股份有限公司
統聯客運
United Highway Bus Company Limited
Ubus
23 495.70 300
巨業交通股份有限公司
巨業交通
Geya Bus Transportation
Geya Bus
14 565.87 58
全航汽車客運股份有限公司
全航客運
Chuan Hang Bus Company Limited
Chuan Hang Bus
8 199.80 71
彰化汽車客運股份有限公司
彰化客運
Chang Hua Bus Company Limited
Chang Hua Bus
1 19.25 7
豐原汽車客運股份有限公司
豐原客運
Fengyuan Bus Transportation Co., Ltd.
Fengyuan Bus
85 1951.05 238
和欣汽車客運股份有限公司
和欣客運
HO-HSIN BUS TRAFFIC CO.,LTD.
Ho Hsin Bus
2 29.70 16
東南汽車客運股份有限公司
東南客運
Southeast Bus Company Limited
Southeast Bus
6 123.85 42
豐榮汽車客運股份有限公司
豐榮客運
Green Transit Co., Ltd.
Green Transit
4 64.85 25
苗栗汽車客運股份有限公司
苗栗客運
MiaoLi Transportation Co., Ltd.
Miaoli Bus
1 50.60 4
中台灣客運股份有限公司
中台灣客運
Central Taiwan Bus Company Limited
Central Taiwan Bus/CTbus
14 463.48 101
南投汽車客運股份有限公司
南投客運
NANTOU BUS TRANSPORTATION CO.,LTD.
Nantou Bus
1 14.60 2
四方股份有限公司
四方客運
??
SF E-bus
1 8.90 5
捷順交通股份有限公司
捷順交通
??
Jieshun Bus
4 94.40 20
中鹿汽車客運股份有限公司
中鹿客運
??
Zhonglu Bus
1 ? ?

Long distance bus service[edit]

Seven bus companies offer service from Taichung city to points outside the Taichung area. Some of the local bus companies have received permission to establish routes to e.g., Taipei.

  • Changhua Bus Company – Through its hub in Changhua City, just to the south of Taichung, Changhua Bus Company offers service to most of Changhua County as well as popular spots in Nantou County, including Nantou City, Caotun, and Puli.
  • Yuanlin Bus Company – Like Changhua Bus Company, it is based in Changhua County, though in the town of Yuanlin, which is south of Changhua City. Many buses travel between downtown Taichung and its hub of Yuanlin. From there, it is possible to get buses to most of southern and western Changhua County as well as to Lugang on the coast.
  • U-Bus Company – U-Bus has routes all over western Taiwan from Taipei to Kaohsiung. They offer service to those two cities, as well as Tainan City and the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. They offer service both from the Taichung Train Station and the Chaoma Bus Station.
  • Kuo-kuang Bus Company – Kuo-Kuang has a national reach with bus stations all over the country. The main Taichung station is located adjacent to Taichung's main train station. They also have stations at Chaoma and Shuinan. They offer service to many places, including Taipei, Kaohsiung, Tainan, Hsinchu, Keelung, Banciao, and Sun Moon Lake.
  • Dragon Bus Company – Dragon bus primarily offers to and from Taipei. Their main Taichung station is at Gancheng, but they offer stops all along Taichung Harbor Road to the expressway that leads to and from Taipei City.
  • Free Go (Flying Dog) – Free Go (or Flying Dog as its Chinese name translates as) offers service primarily from Taichung City to Taipei City and the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. Their main Taichung station is at Gancheng, but they pick up and drop off passengers at locations including the Taichung Train Station, Chungshan Medical University, Chaoma and Shuinan.
  • Aloha Bus Company – Aloha maintains two station in Taichung City, Gancheng and Chaoma. Service is offered to Taipei and Kaohsiung. Transportation to other cities can be arranged via either of those two cities.
  • Ho-Hsin Bus Company – Ho-Hsin offers service to Taipei, Kaohsiung, and Zhongli.

iBike[edit]

Since July 2014, Taichung City started the Public Bicycles Renting Service, which is called iBike in Taichung. It belongs to the same system, YouBike, as Metropolitan Taipei (Taipei City and New Taipei City), Changhua County, Taoyuan City and Hsinchu City do. The service spots are continually added around downtown Taichung. There have been at least 213 service spots around 16 districts in Taichung since 3 May 2017.

Sea Port[edit]

Port of Taichung, located on the coast of Taichung, is the second largest cargo facility on the island capable of handling container shipping. Despite being the second largest port on the island of Taiwan, there are no regular passenger ferry services available and the port is closed to unauthorized personnel.

Inner city traffic[edit]

Taichung is a compact city, and despite many multi-lane roads heavy traffic can leave roads congested at any time, a bicycle or scooter are therefore the fastest forms of transport.

The heaviest traffic congestion is on Taiwan Boulevard (台灣大道) (formerly Taichung Harbor Road (台中港路)), which can come to a stand still not only during rush hour, but also on weekends or late evenings as many of the most popular shopping centers and movie theaters are on that stretch of road. Other busy stretches of road include Sanmin Road Section 3 near Chungyo Department Store and Yizhong Street, especially around 9:00 pm, when local cram schools and baseball games typically let out.

The downtown area has a grid pattern with Ziyou Road (自由路) and Sanmin (三民路) running basically southwest to northeast while Zhongzheng Road (中正路) and Linsen Road (林森路) running northwest from the center of the city, in addition to the more narrow one-way roads that follow the grid pattern as well.

A large number of multi-lane roads then lead out of the downtown area in all directions. Some of them are divided by a physical barrier or median to enhance safety. These roads include Taichung Harbor Road (台中港路), Wuquan West Road (五權西路), Beitun Road (北屯路), Taiyuan Road (太原路), Hanxi Road (旱溪路), Guoguang Road (國光路), Zhongqing Road (中清路,) Wuquan South Road (五權南路) and Wenxin South Road (文心南路).

Provincial Highway 12 goes through Taiwan Boulevard (台灣大道) from Wuqi District in the west to Central District in the East. Provincial Highway 3 comes from Tanzi District through Beitun Road (北屯路), and passes by Jinhua Road (進化路), Jiancheng Road (建成路), Guoguang Road (國光路), heading to the South. Provincial Highway 1Yi (省1乙) starts at Daya District, and goes southward through Zhongqing Road (中清路), Daya Road (大雅路), Wuquan Road (五權路), Fuxing Road (復興路) to the end in Wuri District. Besides, there are also County Road 125, 127, 129, 136 around the downtown area.

Stop lights and lane indicators are generally observed on major streets, but are often viewed more as suggestions rather than legally enforced traffic rules unless traffic police officers are present. Speed limits are often not enforced, except where speed detection cameras are present and marked with signs, making traffic conditions some of the most dangerous on the island. Most major intersections have traffic signs with Romanized names. However, despite the fact that Taichung City has recently declared Hanyu Pinyin the official Romanization system for the city, there are numerous signs leftover from previous Romanization regimes while the a large number of minor intersections have no Romanization of any kind. Navigation in Taichung city is extremely difficult for those who are unable to read Chinese characters.

Freeways and Expressways[edit]

National Highway No. 1 (國道一號), also known as the Sun Yat-Sen Freeway, passes through the western part of the city and has three interchanges in Taichung City. One is at Zhongqing Road (中清路), another at Taichung Harbor Road (中港路) and the southernmost at Wuquan West Road (五權西路).

Taichung-Zhanghua Expressway (中彰快速道路) is the main stretch of Provincial Highway No. 74 that runs from northwestern Taichung to the northern part of Zhanghua City (in Changhua County) just to the south of Taichung. At some points, it is just a few dozen meters east of the Sun Yat-Sen Freeway. While it does not connect directly to that highway, it does have an interchange with National Highway No. 3 in Taichung, where one can then access it in a couple of minutes.

Taichung-Nantou Expressway (中投公路) also known as Provincial Highway No. 63, runs from Taichung's Dali District to Nantou County. It can be accessed from downtown Taichung by driving on Wuquan South Road, where it becomes the Taichung-Nantou Expressway. While there is no direct interchange with National Highway No. 3, one can get off in Wufeng District and, after about two minutes on surface roads, easily access the highway.

Taichung International Airport[edit]

The Taichung Airport is the third, and newest, international airport in Taiwan.

The Taichung Airport civilian terminal is located on the western corner of CCK Air Force Base, 20 kilometers (12 mi) from downtown Taichung City. The main road linking Taichung and the airport is Zhongqing Road (Provincial Route 10.) The airport is located within a kilometer (1,100 yd) of the Shalu (沙鹿) Exit on National Highway Number 3.

In 2002, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications began working on a plan to move air traffic from Taichung's ShuiNan Airport to the Qingquangang (CCK) Air Force base as a first step to converting CCK into an international airport to allow larger aircraft.

The airport opened in early 2004, and the expanded facility at Qingquangang (CCK) Air Force Base has a much longer runway capable of handling larger aircraft. International charter flight service from the city began the same day.

The opening of The Taichung Airport did spark a spat of partisan controversy about being incomplete and safety concerns were raised.[1] The fact that Taiwan has more airports per capita than any other country in the region and prohibits private airplanes fell on deaf ears because the anticipated and protracted opening of direct links with the Chinese mainland are expected to require an increase in air traffic.

Taichung's airport handles daily scheduled flights between Taichung and the cities such as Taipei and Hualien City, as well as the offshore islands of Penghu and Kinmen. Airlines operating out of Taichung include Mandarin Airlines and Uni Air.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "TRA targets shorter trips on competition". China Post. September 21, 2006. Retrieved 2006-09-28. 
  2. ^ "MRT networks to link up with high-speed rail". Taipei Times. February 9, 2000. Retrieved 2006-10-16. 
  3. ^ "仁友客運公司 (Renyou Bus Company)". Retrieved 2006-11-07. 
  4. ^ "Taichung Bus Company Local Routes". Retrieved 2006-11-07. 
  5. ^ "Taichung City Local Bus Routes". Retrieved 2006-11-07. 
  6. ^ "Fengyuan Bus Company timetable". Retrieved November 7, 2006. 
  7. ^ "New Taiwan airport sparks political squabble". 4 March 2004. Retrieved 2006-10-16. 
  8. ^ "Taiwan plans to increase LPG cars". October 2005. Archived from the original on 2006-10-06. Retrieved 2006-10-12. 

External links[edit]

Note – nearly all of these sites are in Chinese

Train service[edit]

Long-distance bus service[edit]

Local bus service[edit]