Bureau of Economic Development, Tainan City Government
 

Haian Business District

Rewrite History of the Young and Artistic Haian by the Future

When talking about Haian Road, we are able to trace back to "Wutiao Harbor" of the Qing Dynasty. At that time, "Jinhua Temple" on "Beishih Street" (Shennong Street) was a religious center, and was enshrined with Saintly Emperor Guan being brought to Taiwan from the hometown of the local people. From the 13th year of the Tongzhi Emperor, local commerce began. "Shennong Street" was hardly reconstructed due to the complicated ownership problems of the real estates in the early years. Besides, the buildings of the Qing Dynasty had no foundations, and the houses on the entire street co-used the same wall. As a result, the old street has all along maintained its most complete appearance. Local intellectuals thought of turning the street to be another highlight of Haian Business District. The street has different artistic and cultural workshops, such as Uncle Yong-Chuan's shop making god's sedan chairs and Xifoguo making gods' statues. In the evening, these old houses are transformed into small bars in their new looks. Walking on the short street makes you feel like traveling from the past old days to today on a time tunnel.

Hai-An Commercial Districts

Normally, a site where people gather always has temples established subsequently. Besides Jinhua Temple built earliest, in the period of Kangxi reign, businessmen raised money to build "Narcissus Temple" to worship Emperor Narcissus. Originally, it was a small temple with a single door and single household unit. But very soon, lots of pilgrims came to the temple. Its size was gradually enlarged. Although the temple was once destroyed by gunfire and then rebuilt, people's respect for Emperor Narcissus has always been strong. At the time Taiwan was occupied by Japan, many traders gathered around the temple, thus leading to the establishment of "Changle Market" (currently named "Narcissus Temple Public Retail Market"). After making a round trip of the market, you will be able to taste different kinds of local snacks and dishes of Tainan.

In the century after disappearance of the pier was an evolution process of this site from busy trade to modernization. At the very beginning, the district was developed according to the daily basic necessities of the local workers. Later on, due to its location at the center of the prefectural city, the district was transformed into a site for general recreation and entertainment. It was not until the digging of "Haian Road Underground Street" that the district experienced a new wave of transformation. In 2004, Tainan City Government started to implement Artistic Street Renovation Plan on Haian Road. Each stage of the plan had different artistic creation and performance. Walking on the road was just like visiting an art museum. Every wall and every corner was given a new life. Now Haian Road has become a site that photographers and art followers like to make a pilgrimage to. In the daytime, it is like a blooming sunflower, and at night, a tuberose with buds getting ready to burst. Despite a great difference between these two scenes, the road has the same gorgeousness in the daytime and at night.

Tainan Prefectural City always leaves us an impression of an old city. In recent years, added with artistic elements of Artistic Street Renovation Plan, the stores of Haian Business District seem to have been reborn. The nighttime Haian Road is an ideal site for workers and college students to enjoy their relaxed time. Just sit on a bench on the pavement, eat some soy sauce-braised food or stir-fried dishes, and drink some beverages or beer under the pleasant atmosphere with swaying light. Soon all the stress and unhappiness encountered in the daytime disappear. In this district, there are immortal mythologies passed on from the elderly and also new pages of history written by the youths of the new generation. Find a place, and stop by to see how the new generation rewrites the history of the Business District by the future.

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