HSR extension should reach Hualien, eastern Taiwan: minister

Transport minister suggests HSR extension should go beyond Pingtung in interview

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Taiwan HSR at Hsinchu Station Platform.

Taiwan HSR at Hsinchu Station Platform. (By Wikimedia Commons)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Minister of Transport and Communications, Wu Hong-mo (吳宏謀) said that Taiwan's plans for a High Speed Rail (HSR) extension to Pingtung City (屏東市) should go even further to reach Hualien City (花蓮市), in an interview on July 31.

During the interview, Wu said that the HSR "cannot only be considered to extend to Pingtung" and "It is appropriate to consider the future and the possibility of extending development," reported United Daily News.

Plans for the HSR extension southward to Pingtung have been in the works for some time, with the Ministry of Transport and Communications commissioning a feasibility study of potential routes in 2017. More recently, there have been calls to not just extend the railway southward, but also eastward.

An assessment of a potential plan to Hualien is expected to be submitted to the ministry, in addition to the 2017 feasibility study in the coming weeks.

Wu said that he hopes that the rail network can be enlarged, within reason, to improve the scope of services provided, reported United Daily News.

In response to the comments, acting Magistrate of Yilan County, Chen Chin-te (陳金德) asked today if Yilan had been forgotten.