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Residents, stores vote against Gongguan pedestrian zone

Residents, stores vote against Gongguan pedestrian zone

Taipei, Jan. 17 (CNA) Residents and representatives of stores in Taipei's Gongguan area voted Saturday to terminate pedestrian-only zones on weekends in designated parts of the district, a decision that the city government will respect. About 70 percent of the few people who voted opposed the measure that prohibits vehicles and only allows pedestrians and bicycles in the designated area on weekends, said Chung Hui-yu (???), commissioner of the city's Department of Transportation. A total of 1,997 area residents and 130 stores in the area were eligible to vote, the city government said. Each store could only cast one vote. Only 203 residents showed up to participate in the vote, and 124 of them voted against and 77 voted in support of the pedestrian-only zones, the transportation department said. Two votes cast were not valid. Among 73 votes cast by the stores, 59 opposed the measure and 14 voted for it to be continued, it said. The issue had been debated in the area, and the city government decided to hold a vote to decide its future. Saturday's casting of ballots followed an online vote held Thursday. Among the 1,485 voters in the online poll, 1,129 voted for the measure, 325 voted against it and 31 said they did not have any opinion. The city government launched the pedestrian-only zones in August 2014, and official statistics show increase in visitors and business revenues in the Gongguan area since then. But some store representatives have complained about the measure, said Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (???) earlier this week. They complained that the car-free zones were inconvenient for them when they needed to restock because delivery trucks could not get close to their places of business, local media reported. Asked about the results of the voting, Ko said Saturday that he would ask the Transportation Department to issue a report on the case, including voting results, before the city makes a final decision. (By Liu Chien-pang, Huang Li-yun and Elaine Hou)


Updated : 2021-09-28 15:51 GMT+08:00