Mayor dismisses Taipei Dome deconstruction rumours

Mayor dismisses Taipei Dome deconstruction rumours
Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je.

TAIPEI, Taiwan - Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je yesterday dismissed a report from a local newspaper that claimed the Taipei City Government has already drafted a plan to deconstruct parts of the Taipei Dome construction project.

According to Chinese-language Apple Daily, a high-ranking unnamed Taipei City official told the newspaper that if the Taipei Dome fails the upcoming safety inspection, the city government will not rule out the possibility of terminating the construction contract with the Farglory Group.

The cancellation of the contract would then bring the city government's deconstruction plan into effect, which will trigger the demolition of the shopping centre, cinema village and the baseball filed, leaving only the business building and hotel for outsource bidding.

Apple Daily went on to claim that the baseball field will be re-engineered into a green space. Reportedly, tree conservation groups claimed that they received an inquiry from the city government regarding the plan.

During his routine post municipal meeting press conference yesterday, Ko dismissed Apple Daily's report as a mere rumour and a hypothetical question that he didn't need to answer.

Ko stressed that technical problems will be dealt with by professionals, and that all decisions will be posted online after the publication of the security inspection report from the city's delegated taskforce.

While addressing the issue regarding the "unnamed official," Ko said that people should stop stressing themselves out by creating hypothetical problems, and that he will not put in the effort to answer such questions.

Mayor Announces New Policy and Service

Ko also took the chance provided by his routine press conference yesterday to make various announcements. The most eye-catching of which was the recruitment of sign language interpretation who will be at his side providing real-time interpretation for the hearing impaired at all of the city's official press conferences, and the mayor's new Community Hospice Care programme.

Ko was quoted as saying, "Sign language translators are common in the US, especially during presidential elections. The service is a sign of respect to the hearing impaired demographic of the nation, and is a normal practice in all developed societies. In the future, all official Taipei City press conferences will have a sign language translator so that the hearing impaired would know what is being talked about."

The interpreter present yesterday was none other than Ting Li-fen, a sign language expert who achieved national acclaim for being able to translate the Shandong-accented Mandarin of octogenarian Chao Yen-ching when he ran for Taipei mayor.

Ting also jokingly said that she will interpret all of the mayor's speeches word from word, including the profanities that the mayor has been known to drop now and then.

Ting was also present at Ko's Community Hospice Care service press conference to translate for the mayor.

Ko said that the policy was implemented so that all Taipei citizens may enjoy the wish of living the final days of their lives in the comfort of their own home with family and friends.

The mayor said that the policy will have a very positive result, and that all local hospitals and clinics should take part in such a meaningful programme.

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