Sunday, November 14, 2010

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Kaohsiung Mass Rapid Transit System

11/14/2010 Taiwan Explorer
About how it feels to ride Kaohsiung's subway


The Kaohsiung Mass Rapid Transit System (usually just short as KMRT, Chinese 高雄大眾捷運系統, pronounced Gāoxióng dàzhòngjié yùnxìtǒng) is after the Taipei MRT the second and smaller subway in Taiwan. It's also a very young subway system, it started to operate in 2008. And from what my girlfriend told me, Gaoshongites are not really into it. The ridership is very modest and below the expectations of the investors. That was true the day we took the train here. The photos below are from the Yanchengpu station in the Yancheng district. I must say the whole MRT is very clean, modern and very friendly to those who are taking a train for the first time. Everything is very well explained in English, when you buy a single token. The ride was smooth, fast and quiet. And you don't have masses of people (well at least not in the morning), that would make your ride unpleasant. We were headed to Tsoying and the Lotus lake, so we had to go north to the Xinzuoying Station, which is not only an MRT station, but also a High-speed railway station. It took us a while to reach there, because the distance is big.

Let me show you some impressions from a KMRT station:

The main hall.

The ticket machine, easy to use.

The turnstiles.

The waiting area near the trains.

Cute warning signs about eating and drinking inside the trains.

A KMRT train from inside. A bit different than the one in Taipei.

The handles are green and not blue. Coincidence?

Alighting.

In Kaohsiung there is also one of the most beautiful subway stations in the world, if you ask me. But it's definitely the most amazing station in Taiwan, designed by an Italian architect. It's the Formosa Boulevard Station, see some photos here>>