Photo of USTDC courtesy of Les Duffin

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Linkou Club Annex Location

There was a question from Zhuxiu regarding my Construction at Old HSA Site entry.

He wrote:
"Whatever happened to the Linkou EM Club that was located just across Zhongshan N. Road from Headquarters Support Activity? It was next door to the MAAG theater compound when I was stationed with the Naval Security Group in 1963-64."

When I arrived at USTDC in 1973, it was called the Linkou Club Annex and it was located on the south side of Minzu East Road, across from the Roma Hotel at the intersection of Jhongshan North Road and Minzu East Road. Here's a photo of the exterior of the building (courtesy of the "Dawgs" at the Linkou website).

I believe someone told me that it moved there from another location in the area and maybe someone can tell us where that was. Here's a Google image of the area that I've edited to show some of the landmarks as they existed in 1973-1974.

Does anyone know what the old Linkou Club location looks like today? If you have a fairly recent photo, please drop me an email.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Construction at old HSA Site

A couple of days ago I mentioned that the old Headquarters Support Activity compounds are presently under construction for next year's exhibition. After all the buildings in both compounds were demolished years ago, the East Compound (USTDC, PX, commissary, etc.) became home to an art museum and park. Much of the new construction will be done in that park area.

Today I received some current photographs of the area from Kenneth, a friend of Kent's (Taipei Air Station blog and website) who lives in Taipei.

It's not hard to figure out what this sign is saying, though it probably says it in a more friendly way than ours do here in the States.
This is facing north on the east side of Jhongshan North Road. You can see the top of the white, modernistic looking art museum ahead. I think we're at the approximate spot where the hostels were located.
This is the same shot taken from a spot just a little further south. I think it is probably close to where the gate was to the East Compound.
This photo was probably taken from approximately the same spot as the one above, but you're now facing south. The tall building on the corner directly ahead was the Roma Hotel when I was at TDC during 1973-1974, but I think it had other names over the years. If you look to the right of the photo, you can see the bookstore that was on the far corner. I don't remember what it was called in those days, but you could buy all kinds of books, records and tapes -- all bootleg copies, as far as I know -- at bargain prices. I think someone told me that it is still a book store today.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Mystery Field

After writing yesterday about all the changes coming to the old HSA areas, I started thinking about the area that was located between the gate to the East Compound and the two hostels to the left of that gate.

My memory is a little hazy (and probably becoming more so each year) but I'm guessing that plot of ground was probably about thirty yards square. It was surrounded by a high concrete wall when I was there in 1973-1974 and was covered with high weeds.

Some said it was a mass grave, though I've never been able to find any such reference. Still it seems like it would have been a pretty valuable piece of real estate to leave unimproved, even during the 1970s.

The photograph here was probably taken from an upper floor of what was then the Roma Hotel during my time in Taipei. I believe that building is still there today at the northeast corner of the intersection of Minzu East Road and Jhonshang North Road. The photo itself is of the hostel where I used to live (room circled), but you can clearly see the fenced-in and weed covered area that I'm talking about.

If anyone out there remembers that piece of ground or knows what the real story was about it, please leave a comment. It was apparently cleared when they demolished all the buildings and built the Art Park that covers that area today, but I've always wondered about its history.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

More Changes Coming to HSA Compounds

Kent, over at the Taipei Air Station blog, recently alerted me to this website, which describes major new changes coming to the old Headquarters Support Activity East and West compound areas.

Of course all the old buildings that we knew back in the day, such as the USTDC building, BX, commissary, theater, library, chapel, gas station, etc., were torn down many years ago but things are about to change again with the construction of the 2010 Taipei International Gardening and Horticulture Exposition. Kent says that a friend of his in Taipei reports that work has already begun and there are now construction fences down both sides of the street.

The more things change, the more they . . . keep right on changing.

Monday, March 2, 2009

MAAG Hsinchu - Commerce and Production 1950's

Old friend Kent, over at the Taipei Air Station blog, has been posting several fantastic photos from the Hsinchu area that were taken during the late 1950s.

Today's entry is titled "MAAG Hsinchu - Commerce and Production 1950's" which you will find at this link and then by clicking on "Next" at the bottom of each page.

Lots of really great photographs from that period!