By James Lo, The China Post
TAIPEI, Taiwan — A busy intersection in Taipei will remain closed to traffic until Friday at the earliest after a botched construction Sunday caused part of the pavement to sink, the Taiwan Power Company (Taipower) said on Tuesday.
Taipower expanded the road closure of the collapsed intersecting area of Taipei’s Bade Road and Guangfu Road’s North and South sections on Wednesday, in order to pour in cement to repair the area Tuesday marked the fourth day in which Taipei authorities have sealed of the intersection. On April 29, Taipower began a routine maintenance service in the cable tunnel which connected the Da’an Electrical Substation with the Songhu Electrical Substation. As maintenance continued on April 30, toward the area where Bade Road and both parts of Guangfu Road intersected, Taipower discovered both sand and water seepage and called for the surrounding area to be sealed off so that repairs could be done. Following an expansion of the road closure on May 2, where the seepage had caused the sealed off diameter to collapse 9.7 centimeters into the ground, more areas were closed off on May 3. According to Taipower’s Northern Area Construction Office Director Chen Lai-chin (陳來進) a lot of press had mistakenly released news stating that the seepage had caused the collapsed area to sink to 11.6cm deep, 1.9cm deeper than the previous calculation on May 2. Chen explained that the expansion of the road closrue was authorized so that undamaged areas close to the seepage could be excavated and used to pour in cement to fortify the weakened ground. Chen said that as of 2:30 a.m. on Wednesday, the collapse was under control, and no further damage had been observed. However, Chen added, the cement would need 2 to 3 days to completely harden, meaning that traffic would only resume on Friday.