Wednesday, January 10, 2007


Hai-an road was designed to be a underground shopping center and had been throught a long period of construction. For some reason, the road is paved but shops didn't find their way to the underground. The Tainan City Government had local artists transform ruins that were the byproducts of the construction into art pieces. Walls of Paintings, photo montage, and a tower made of wood can be seen along the road and the blue print house is the most popular one. The transformation is still taking place on Hai-an road: the wooden tower has been torn down, the photo montage has been removed, more and more shops settle in here; even the most popular art piece has undergone some modifications. Despite the trend of becoming a commercial center, the blue print house will still be the most popular street art witnessing the transformation on Hai-an road.

Tainan City held the national lantern festival of 2005 at An-Pin. 2005 was the year of rooster according to the zodiac, so the lantern was designed as a phoenix. In May 2006, typhoon Chanchu ripped off part of the coating of the lantern and caused a fire that destroyed the LED lights built-in the lantern (photo taken before the typhoon hit). Tainan City Government gave up the idea of repairing the whole LED lighting system due to the expence and had a company fix the coating and redesign the lighting system from outside of the lantern. Without the fancy LED lighting system, the phoenix was reborn from the ashes and has transformed from an enthusiastic peacock to a sophisticated phoenix. At night, the phoenix reflects the colors of white, blue, green and purple in the sky of An-pin, telling the story of changes in Tainan.

The central park of Tainan, like every other central park in different cities of Taiwan, is an area that many people choose not to get close to at night. Rumor has it that it is a shelter for homeless and desperados, a playground for sexual afficionados but I have never heard anyone being arrested or hurt in the park. The urban planning project of Tainan City had walls surrounding the park torn down and installed more lights in the park. The central park is now a more friendly area to the public even throught the dark image of the park at night is not easily converted by the installation of a few lights.

Taiwan Sugar Corp. in Tainan City has huge lands near the airport area, instead of growing sugar canes as they did in the past, the land is now transformed as flower farms in which sun flowers, cosmos etc. are planted for tourists attraction. In between the flowers, an area is designated as a BBQ area where you can BBQ sweet potatoes in the old fashion way: burying food in a kiln built with dirt.

Locations of blue print house, phoenix , The central park of Tainan, Taiwan Sugar Corp. on Google Maps.

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