Final section of No. 61 highway to open for traffic Friday | Society | Focus Taiwan

Photo courtesy of the the Directorate General of Highways

Taipei, Dec. 26 (CNA) The final section of Provincial Highway No. 61, from Fangyuan to Dacheng in Changhua County will open for traffic Friday, marking the completion of the highway.

Also known as the West Coast Expressway, the 291.509-kilometer highway stretches from Bali in New Taipei to Shifen in Tainan, with construction starting in 1992.

The road has been opened to traffic in sections over the past 28 years, with the Fangyuan-Dacheng section being the last one, marking the completion of the nation’s third north-south highway serving western Taiwan, after National Freeways No. 1 and No. 3.

Video by ROADMAN’s YouTube channel.

However, because the No. 61 expressway is toll-free, it has often been dubbed the “poor man’s highway” by local motorists.

Meanwhile, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍), said in a previous interview that he hopes to change the image of the highway, calling it a major transport hub connecting many popular sights and attractions on the island’s west coast.

Earlier this month, a road section along Provincial Highway No. 61 that crosses Tongxiao Township in Miaoli County was named by netizens as the most scenic highway section in the country, beating out 30 other nominations in an online vote carried out by the Directorate General of Highways (DGH) in November.

The Nielsen-Lohse steel arch bridge at Zhuwei Fishing Harbor (Photo taken by KL)

Some of the scenic spots along the expressway include Taoyuan City’s Zhuwei Fishing Harbor, where the red Nielsen-Lohse steel arch bridge has become a popular tourist landmark.

Visitors can dine at one of the many restaurants that serve seafood fresh from the port, as well as visit souvenir shops and a recently renovated park for families with children.

The Zhuwei Fishing Harbor’s marina (Photo taken by KL)

Near the Dacheng area in Changhua, visitors can experience the rich natural landscape at Wanggong Fishing Harbor, which is also known for hosting one of the major oyster farms in the country.

The Hanbao Wetlands are also nearby, a major spot for migrating birds which visit the area very year.

(By Wang Shu-fen, Wu Che-hao and Ko Lin) Enditem/AW

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