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Sun, Jan 02, 2000 - Page 3 News List

Waste incinerator restaurant opens

By Yu Sen-lun  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taipei yesterday inaugurated the world's first restaurant built on a waste incinerator chimney. The Peitou incinerator revolving restaurant and its viewing platform yesterday began operation with city officials saying it was a gift to Taipei citizens for the new millennium.

More than seven thousand people swarmed to the restaurant, entitled Star-plucking Building (摘星樓), which can seat 120 people.

Conducting the inauguration ceremony, Taipei City Mayor Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said the unveiling of the site not only represents the progress of environmental technology, but also, is an honor to Peitou citizens.

"No one had even thought that at a place to burn garbage, you can enjoy dinner while taking in the beauty of Taipei," said Ma.

Ma also promised residents of Peitou and Shilin (士林) would be granted special privileges for having the incinerator built in their area.

The viewing platform will be open free of charge to Peitou and Shilin residents. The entrance fee otherwise will be NT$40 for 30 minutes.

Ma also promised to build a warm-water swimming pool for Peitou and Shihlin citizens to use free of charge.

The revolving restaurant is powered with energy generated by the incinerator.

"This is a great example of recycling energy resources," said Eric Chu (朱九龍), the factory director.

The incinerator is located at Chou-mei borough (洲美里) of Peitou, a sandbank area and is also part of the Kuantu Plain reservation. The chimney tower, 150m (about 40 floors) tall, is located directly at the junction of the Tamshui and Keelung rivers.

From the restaurant, which is 30m below the top of the tower, the view includes the estuary of the Tamshui river and its bird reservation, Chu said. "From the viewing platform, which is four meters below the restaurant, you can also see Yangming Shan (陽明山), Kuan-yin Shan (觀音山) and the whole of the Taipei Basin," he said.

According to Chu, the estuary and bird reservation will not be affected by the incinerator. Waste air emitted from the incinerator will undergo a detoxification process.

Chu said the dioxin release rate of the Peitou incinerator is far below the standard rate of 0.1 ng/Nm3. An investigation by the Environmental Protection Administration in 1998 indicated the rate for the Peitou incinerator is 0.06 ng/Nm3, Chu said.

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