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New Taipei City inaugurates eco-school

Ecologically designed buildings and Taiwan’s first sloping running track are novel features of Xinshi Elementary School inaugurated Aug. 29 in New Taipei City’s Tamsui District.

“Xinshi combines environmentally friendly, low-carbon and ecological surroundings to create an optimal learning environment for nurturing all-round talent,” New Taipei City Mayor Eric Li-luan Chu said.

The school features an ecological forest and pond, energy saving facilities, rainwater recycling and teaching farm, an official at the city’s Public Works Department said. The campus design has been awarded diamond certification for meeting the nine criteria against which a green building is judged, including ecological diversity; energy saving; greening; healthy classrooms; low-carbon features; waste reduction; sewage and garbage disposal; water conservation and water resources. The certification is issued by the Ministry of the Interior as part of government efforts to encourage green design.

“Xinshi employs the latest building and playground concepts,” Principal Lin Jian-zong said. “The sports field is not flat red earth, but undulates. The running track is light blue to symbolize the clear blue sea bordering Tamsui and the slope can enhance students’ fitness.”

To integrate the school into local communities, the sports field, library and interactive classroom are open to the public. The facilities are designed with creative space allocation to meet the demand for a diversified learning environment and cultivate reading as an enjoyable experience, with an ecological forest to satisfy student curiosity. These features combine to make a top quality, sustainable, healthy campus.Xinshi’s grounds extend over 2.6 hectares, with 5,700 square meters of building floor area, the Public Works Department said. Total construction costs were NT$408 million (US$13.6 million). The school will accomodate 900 pupils in 30 classes across six years

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