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SINGAPORE — The 11th Plenary Meeting and Exhibition of the Asian Network of Major Cities 21 (ANMC 21) will be held from July 2 to 4 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center, Singapore. Using “Green Taipei – Low-Carbon Tourism” as its theme, the Taipei City Government’s Department of Information and Tourism (DOIT) will introduce the convenience and rich array of attractions offered by bike touring along the city’s riversides as well as in the downtown areas. Pineapple cakes, an iconic Taipei gift and souvenir item, will also be given away at the Taipei stand, giving visitors a taste-test of the city’s myriad charms and tasty experiences.
In recent years the city has energetically been putting low-carbon travel facilities in place. There has been systematic promotion of the use of public transportation, along with the concept of using low-energy, low-pollution bicycles for short trips to access public-transportation nodes. Other initiatives that have been strongly promoted are riverside leisure biking, city travel via the Taipei Metro, and the YouBike bicycle-rental network. Current plans are to create 35 shady boulevards within the next three years, embracing travelers in a city of lush green beauty.
Promoting a LOHAS low-carbon environment, the city has created six unique, dedicated riverside bike paths. Pick up a bike from the nearest public bike-rental station and explore the riverside areas along the Keelung, Jingmei, Xindian, and Danshui rivers. Travelers can use their passport as a guarantee, or leave a cash deposit of NT$2000, and head off on their bike rental with no further fuss. Endless enticing natural, cultural, historical, and other types of attractions are enjoyed along the paths, making these excursions a wonderful way to explore the city in depth. Traveling from point A to point B is made pleasantly convenient, travelers enjoy more control over their time, and more mobility and serendipity are brought to their itineraries. For detailed information on the riverside bike-path system, bike rentals, theme itineraries, and other related matters, visit the DOIT-established online service http://www.taipeitravel.net/.
A prime option for light and convenient downtown travel is the YouBike system, an inexpensive bike-rental service provided for residents to promote eco-friendly living. Tourists can apply for a Short-Term Card or Long-Term Card, and can download the free Taipei Easy-Go app on their mobile phones. Check rental-kiosk locations and the number of bikes available, pick up your YouBike, and off you go on your in-city micro-travel adventures.
Taipei’s greenification and environmental-protection efforts have brought it international recognition in recent years. Last year the city was ranked second overall in the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Asian Green City Index. In the DOIT display it is shown how Taipei has become a premium city with a travel environment of superlative quality, and how an international outlook has been adopted which emphasizes the balanced development of tourism resources and a humanistic environment. The city’s commitment to low-carbon travel will continue undaunted, and our expectation is that we will become a development model for other Asian cities.