Taiwan Police Station as a BIG Sky Lantern in PingXi
Police station lights up Pingxi’s tourist profile
Pingxi, known internationally for its lantern festival celebrations, will inaugurate a new lantern-shaped police station March 14, New Taipei City Government’s Tourism and Travel Department said March 4.
“The station is part of city government’s efforts to transform idle public assets into multifunctional facilities offering quality public services,” New Taipei Deputy Mayor Chen Shen-hsien said. “Other than a local landmark and police station, this new structure will further serve tourism functions as an observatory, cyclist stop, information center, food service area and lantern shop.”
What really makes the station unique is not just its shape, but that its exterior glass wall also doubles as a giant light-emitting diode, or LED, screen, so visitors can watch their sky lanterns rise heavenward in a brief televised spectacular.
“Visitors can write their wishes on a card, attach it to their lanterns and release them skyward, then watch the lanterns on a screen made of 193,924 LEDs,” New Taipei tourism department director Chen Kuo-chun said.
Chen said that from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. every evening there would be three releases per hour, each of 10 lanterns, and costing NT$150 (US$4.95) per lantern. In anticipation of the popularity of the new service, people will be able to book a time slot either in person or by telephone.
To show its enthusiasm for the facility, the Pingxi trader’s group has joined the local government in putting together special packages with limited offers.
“The police lantern matches modern techniques with local culture,” Pingxi business leader Li Wen-quan said. “We look forward to taking local traditional lantern celebrations to a new level.”
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