Taipei / TAIWAN /2011 Huaguang Community, located in central Taipei, was a prison site during 1895-1945 when Japanese governed Taiwan.
In the 50s when the Kuomingtang of China came to Taiwan, it was used as dormitories for government staff of Ministry of Justice. The residents were mostly civil servants and their families. Due to economic pressures and increasing family population, they created more spaces from building rooms along side of the original Japanese houses.
Nowadays’ Huaguang community still retains a mixed architectural flavor of prison walls, Japanese houses and Taiwanese brick lanes which documents a lot about Taiwan’s history. Since 2007, the government has listed Huaguang community as part of the urban renewal projects, which will change old Huaguang community into a “Taipei Wall Street”. Due to the fact that the old government staff had past away and only their families were left, the government has claimed that their families were “illegal residents”.
The current residents are now being forced to move out of their homes without a replacement program. Elders who have lived all their lives in this community, facing their remaining days in fears, don’t know where to move to. All the protests and manifestations have gone in vain, now most people have left their homes, only the protesting banners in black and white and deserted lanes were left behind.
Huaguang community, this last military community in Taipei, will disappear in history.