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Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Last weekend I had the pleasure of attending the re-opening ceremony of Futai Street Mansion (撫臺街洋樓). The two-story building is located at 延平南路26號, near the old North Gate of Taipei.

The building was originally constructed in 1910 as a free-standing store by the Japanese and in 1997 it was designated as a landmark. In 2002 a fire destroyed the building almost completely. While the city of Taipei rebuilt the structure and restored many of the architectural details of the building, the management of the building is done by the private sector, under the direction of 陳國慈. This is the second historic building that is under her care - she is also the director of Taipei Story House (台北故事館).

The building now functions as a mini-museum and currently has a exhibition on the history of the city of Taipei. There is also a little tea house at the ground floor.

I am glad to see that preservation is becoming more prominent in Taipei. While Taipei may not be a city with a relatively long history, there are still plenty of buildings with stories waiting to be rediscovered.

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