On a recent trip to Taiwan, I noticed that the MRT platforms there are labelled 月台 (yuetai / yuètái). Asking a professional tour guide (Taiwanese local, native Chinese speaker) only revealed that he'd never been asked that question, but he didn't have an answer for me.
Googling around, I found the following synonym: zhàntái ( 站台 ) - Han trainer dictionary, which sounds more understandable (platform for standing). However, I don't see any connection between MRT platforms and months or moons. There doesn't seem to even be a link to shape, as the platforms are straight. (The 'queue-up' lines drawn on the ground are often L-shaped - that's closer to a moon shape.)
Here are some links to photos containing the phrase:
- Taipei MRT rolling stock at Platform 2, Ximen Station 20080317.jpg
- MRT Taipei Main Station Platform 1 20070503.jpg
- Taipei Taiwan MRT-Station-Ximen-01.jpg
My question: What does 月 refer to in the Taiwanese phrase for MRT platform, 月台?