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Residents of Taiwan's Taoyuan protest construction work scheduled on Sundays

Extra days of construction scheduled after delays caused by COVID-19

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Officials in Taoyuan discuss plans for social housing project in area. 

Officials in Taoyuan discuss plans for social housing project in area.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Residents of Taoyuan’s Jhongli District took to the streets on Sunday (Aug. 15) to protest the construction work scheduled on Sundays, claiming the noise from a nearby site prevents them from getting quality rest on weekends.

Approximately 400 local residents in March signed a petition against carrying out construction on Sundays. Protesters at Sunday's gathering claimed local officials are trying to complete the project quickly so they can add it to their list of political achievements and that they are not considering the needs of the locals.

The public housing project, which is three months behind schedule, resumed on Sunday with a new work schedule that includes weekends, in an effort to make up for construction delays, according to a UDN report.

In response to the protest, Chuang Ching-chuan (莊敬權), director of Taoyuan’s municipal housing development office, asserted that work would continue on Sundays and that he hopes local residents can be considerate and adapt to the circumstances. He said tasks that create loud clanging noises would not begin until after 8 a.m.

Construction on the project, which began in June 2019, was originally due to conclude in March next year. Yet due to unforeseen impacts from the COVID-19 outbreak in May, which led to a shortage of workers and changes to the building blueprints, it is now likely to be completed next June, he said.

Longchang’s borough chief Fan Chin-shui (范金水) said that even shutting the windows cannot keep the din from permeating homes in the area and that the noise is having a detrimental impact on the residents’ psychological health. Sometimes, Fan says, the clamor continues until 11 p.m., which is unacceptable as most residents work full time and need a good night’s sleep.