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Each Lunar New Year, the Taipei Metro releases a special ticket based on the Chinese Zodiac. This year’s design had an extra theme — it also paid tribute to the 20th birthday of the Taipei Metro.

The Taipei Rapid Transit Corporation commissioned Taipei-based designer Kuocheng Liao and Midnight Design to create this commemorative “Year of the Monkey” one-day ticket design. It’s the coolest design work I’ve seen produced by any Taiwan government agency. By a longshot.

Of course, the 800 sets all sold out on January 23, 2016 — the day it was released. But here’s a look at what’s inside…

Inside the plastic sleeve: a red and gold chuen lien banner, a poster, two One-Day Pass Tickets, and four red pocket envelopes.

Oh my god, I want it. I want it.

The illustrations of 20 unique Taipei images. Can you recognize them all?

The illustrations are also featured on the two ticket designs. Look closely and you’ll see 20 Taiwanese macaque monkeys looking for celestial peaches, which represent longevity.

The promotional poster. Note the 300NT price. I’d pay that.

I love the process photos showing how the chuen lien and red/gold envelopes were printed. Above, the metal plate for the chuen lien.

I’m sure the printer does fantastic work, but he has a bit of a clutter problem, don’t you think?

Getting that gold sheet into position…

How I wish there was a video to show how these were made.

The final product. Just amazing.

Hats off to Kuocheng Liao, a Master’s student at National Chengchi University, and Midnight Design on the incredible work. And for getting this project through all the government red tape and into the real world. It couldn’t have been easy.

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