Center Of Taipei
1, ShiFu Rd (1F to 4F, Lower
Building, West Gate, City Hall); (02) 2757-4547
Hours: Tues-Sun 9 am-5 pm
Closed Mondays and National Holidays
MRT: City Hall Station
--By Claire Tyrrell Translated
by Jade Weng
Discovery Center, situated in the Taipei City
Hall, invites us to delve into the history
of Taipei and gain a better understanding
of the city pulsating around us.
Enter City Hall and, just to the right of
the entrance, is the "Impressions Hall"
with an information desk, and familiar faces
being quoted giving their impressions of Taipei--both
good and bad!
Head up to the fourth floor
and begin your voyage of discovery by entering
the "Dialogue with Time Hall". Focussing
on the historical development of the city,
it includes original tribes, the emergence
of trade, and the changing face of the city.
The old wall features prominently, as do the
areas of Manka and DaDoaCheng and the famous
DiHua Street. All information, provided in
Chinese and English, is both interesting and
given in very manageable chunks.
This is, however, primarily a place of visual
images in the form of models, old and new
photographs, and film footage--which combine
effectively to provide thought-provoking insights.
From the nostalgia of the old city, head down
to the third floor and view the more modern
face of Taipei. Here the images continue with
the lights and neon of Taipei's modern thoroughfares
and changing skyline, while also featuring
the environment, movie industry and architecture.
Also visit "Discovery Theater" with
360-degree screens, a rotating platform and
integrated film, light and computerized special
effects. Films are about 15 minutes long and
cover "The Formation of Taipei",
"City Life", and "My Dream
City" (contact center for schedule).
All contain thoughtful clips, and "The
Formation of Taipei" leads from an explosive
start of volcanoes, through traditional-style
animation and historic film footage, ending
in a burst of fireworks.
Admission is free and I certainly recommend
a visit to appreciate, once again, the city
we call home.