Big nightlife crackdown
Police fanned out across central Taiwan as part of a nationwide nightlife crackdown late last week.
In Taichung, several confrontations between police and nightlife customers occurred, including one with a man brandishing a katana.
Another incident occurred with an inebriated woman that led to her being pepper sprayed and subdued.
The police also reported problems with people wanting to pet and play with the police dogs.
The most dramatic find by police was an MK18 assault rifle.
In Taichung, arrests included three for gun charges, 85 for drugs, 20 for gambling, 1 for money laundering and found 15 wanted criminals.
They also found three missing people.
In Changhua over 200 police took part in the raids, and over 100 in Nantou.
Nantou had also had a large reported number of arrests with 92 total.
Four of those had firearms, 30 were arrested for drugs and 52 for gambling.
New Taichung Arena bid announced
The architectural design of Taichung Arena proposed by renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma & Associates and Taiwan’s local firm Bio-Architecture Formosana has won the second stage of the bid project.
They describe it as a world-class and multi-functional arena, and hope to make it a new architectural landmark in Taiwan.
Kengo Kuma also designed the new Japan National Stadium for the 2020 Summer Olympics and the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Marseille (FRAC Marseille).
The Taichung Arena will be located in the Beitun district near the Shuinan Economic and Commercial Zone, Central Taiwan Science Park and the Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium.
The team’s architectural plan is based on the theme of “sky corridor, sports park, world landmark and civic paradise,” which symbolizes the blending of Taichung Arena with its environment.
Taichung Arena project is expected to cover 6.9 hectares, cost NT$6.5 billion and to accommodate more than 15,000 spectators, with plans to host sporting events such as basketball, volleyball, badminton, tennis, and soccer as well as concerts.
It is expected to open in 2026.
The facades of the three main structures are said to be inspired by the Dajia Rush Straw Crafts in the coastal suburban district in Taichung.
However, Kengo Kuma recently completed a very similar structure called The Exchange in Darling Harbour, in Sydney, Australia.
Japanese encephalitis infects baby
With all the attention on the coronavirus, it is easy to forget other dangerous illnesses such as Japanese encephalitis and dengue fever.
Taichung and Changhua have recorded two cases each of Japanese encephalitis, though one of the Taichung cases may have been contracted in Nantou.
All had been in regular contact with farms and open country.
One of the cases in Changhua is a three month old baby, the youngest case in 21 years.
This is worrying because while most people infected by the Japanese encephalitis virus have no symptoms or have mild symptoms, including fever, headaches and aseptic meningitis–older people and children tend to have more severe cases of the disease.
Serious cases are characterized by disorientation, seizures, spastic paralysis, coma, and potentially, death.
The Taichung City government has announced a mosquito spraying program will be implemented.
First indigenous self-driving vehicle hits the road
Taiwan’s first indigenous driverless minibus hit the road last, in a trial run in Changhua County.
The so-called “WinBus” drives along a 7.5-kilometer route in Changhua Coastal Industrial Park in Lugang Township and stops at four tourist factories.
All parts and components were made in Taiwan and the WinBus was built by a chain of local industries, under the auspices of the Automotive Research and Testing Center (ARTC).
The Changhua industrial park was chosen for the public test drive because it is home to many companies in Taiwan’s automotive parts supply chain.
People are advised to book in advance to avoid waiting in long lines.
New tourist spot for Changhua
The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) on Sunday inaugurated its first manned weather station in Changhua County and has opened it to tourists.
It will work with the Taiwan Agricultural Research Institute and National Museum of Natural Science to promote popular science.
In the 6,000 square-meter venue, visitors can see weather forecasting instruments and watch a scientific film in the station’s theater.
Admission is free, but reservations have to be made for individual and group visitors.
Elderly couple an Instagram hit
An elderly Taichung couple has come up with a unique way to charm on Instagram.
The couple has been running a dry cleaner shop for the last sixty years, and sometimes people never come back to pick up their clothes.
So, the couple took to posing in these abandoned clothes, with some of the outfits up to 20 years old.
Image courtesy of 臺中市政府警察局 Facebook page