Sing Village: Reviving a Cultural Landscape
【◎Written by David Huang ◎English translation by Hou Ya-ting ◎Photos by Huang Jing-wen】
Sing Village, a military dependents' village in Kaohsiung's Gangshan District, has been recognized as a Cultural Landscape by Kaohsiung City Government's Bureau of Cultural Affairs.
During the period of Japanese colonial rule, the village was a dormitory for air force pilots. When the ROC Government took control of Taiwan, it continued to house air force personnel. Back then, Sing Village was the most sophisticated military dependents' community in Gangshan District.
After its residents were relocated, the village decayed into a state of desolation, until the filming of A Touch of Green. This Taiwanese TV series depicted the chaos which followed the surrender of Japanese forces in Taiwan in 1945 and the arrival of ROC soldiers and administrators. A Touch of Green's production designers and set decorators refurbished the village, restoring it to its former glory.
Sing Village combines Japanese architecture with Baroque touches. Ever since A Touch of Green was first broadcast in 2015, the architectural splendor of the village's buildings, and the fa?ade with multiple arches, have drawn crowds of visitors. No longer forgotten, Sing Village has become the talk of the town.
Through the lens of A Touch of Green, we see the value of preserving Sing Village. More importantly, the series provided the impetus for the village, which covers 1.7 hectares, to be preserved as a Cultural Landscape by the city government. This historic site has witnessed many changes, from being a dormitory for Japanese servicemen, to a community of ROC military personnel and their families, to a veterans' village, and then a deserted settlement.
Sing Village comprises five two-story buildings (buildings A, B, C, D, and E), as well as two single-story buildings, a club (Building F) and an auditorium (Building G). The renovation of Building B has been completed; buildings A and F are undergoing reconstruction. The renovation of buildings C, D, E and G must wait for budget application and approval. To achieve a preservation-based revitalization project, the Bureau of Cultural Affairs has transformed Building B into an exhibition space. Beginning May 30, Building B is hosting an exhibition about veterans' villages. As its renovation proceeds, Sing Village will become a wonderful place to appreciate the architecture and culture of Taiwan's military dependents' villages.
Intersection of Renshou S. Rd. and Jieshou Rd., Gangshan District, Kaohsiung City