Maokong cable cars coming soon

Maokong cable cars near Zhinan Temple in the south of Taipei City

Today I went out to Muzha to have a look at the new Maokong cable car (貓空纜車) system. The system is not in operation yet, but should start running in June this year.The line is four kilometres long and has four stations: (1) Taipei Zoo (動物園), (2) Inside Zoo (園內), (3) Zhinan Temple (指南宮) and (4) Maokong (貓空). 

The system will be managed by the Taipei Rapid Transport Corporation who are also responsible for running the MRT. Fares will be from NT$30-50 and can be paid using the Easy Card (悠遊卡) that is used on the MRT and Taipei's buses.  

Maokong Cable Car Visitor Information Centre near the Taipei Zoo

I took the MRT to the Taipei Zoo Station to get a look at the first station of the cable car system, Taipei Zoo Station. The cable car station is located about 500 metres from the MRT station. To get there you have to walk past the Zoo Mall and the Maokong Cable Car Visitor Information Centre. I initially thought the information centre was the cable car station. However, I discovered that the centre was mainly designed for children's entertainment. 

two fake pandas at the Maokong Cable Cars information center

There were even two fake pandas. They were actually moving and the little one was talking (see the video at YouTube). I thought to myself that Taiwan need not bother with pandas from China.  I am sure these pandas could be easily modified to give hugs for NT$50. It would be a great money-spinner and perhaps could even be exported to China!!!

Taipei Zoo cable car station

The Taipei Zoo cable car station was just past the visitor information center. It was not possible to access the inside of the station, but I took some photos from the outside. The design of the stations seems very simple and minimalist. The above photo is black and white, but the stations have a grey concrete exterior.  

Zhinan Temple Station of the Maokong Cable Car system

Next I travelled from the Taipei Zoo to Zhinan Temple via MRT and bus. The Zhinan Temple is the location of the third station on the cable car line. The photo of the Zhinan Temple cable car station above is not very clear because of fog.

High voltage power lines in the foreground dwarf the Maokong Cable Car line in the background

An article in the Taipei Times last week reported about the concerns of some local residents about noise and also possible landslides as a result of the construction. I am not very familiar with the area so I don't feel qualified to make a judgement. One thing I can say is that any visual impacts of the cable cars near the Zhinan Temple are small in comparison to a nearby high voltage power line (see photo above). 

When the cable cars start running I will go back and take a ride and post a full report and more photos here.  

Update: The Taipei Times has an article about the cable cars today. According to the article the system will start running on 30 June. (added 18 April 2007)  

8 thoughts on “Maokong cable cars coming soon

  1. 看它們兩個怪怪的表演也很好笑。台灣人喜歡那個可愛的樣子,無尾熊、熊貓、企鵝、Hello Kitty、等等。

  2. 可是我討厭hello kitty…..貓咪不該看起來這樣呆呆的….,我不喜歡那些把動物變成呆呆的玩偶,可是外銷投幣式抱抱熊貓的idea,絕對比把熊貓引進台灣好多了:D

  3. 我跟你一樣討厭KITTY。 我也覺得想要抱無尾熊的人有點奇怪﹐因為看無尾熊很可愛但是抱它們有點危險。

  4. 那我看我的學生有毛病! 特別是年紀比較小的,他們每一個都要抱無尾熊.。 其實,好像他們覺得只有兩個原因才要去澳洲。第一就是因為他們要看袋鼠,第二是因為他們要摸無尾熊。不管我怎麼樣說,沒有用。說無尾熊很臭,他們也不相信。

    不過最近沒有像之前那麼多喜歡hello kitty。他們比較喜歡小叮當。

  5. Odd that the media has given the city a free pass on construction delays and lost operating revenue. The opening date has changed so many times I no longer have any faith in the city press releases. First it was July 06…… then December…… now they are saying late June… maybe.

  6. 我也覺得擁抱熊貓的點子很有趣ㄟ!如果他可以做得再逼真一點的話,一定很有賣點吧!

  7. Pingback: David on Formosa » Riding the Maokong Gondola

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