Aerial video shows luxurious Beijing rooftop villa
Monday, August 19, 2013 - 00:38
Aug. 19 - Aerial footage shows parts of a huge, luxurious villa on top of a Beijing apartment building being dismantled after the city's authorities ruled it had been built illegally. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Aerial footage on Thursday (August 15) shows workers tearing down grape vines and other decorations from a large imitation rock-covered villa, perched on the roof of a 26-story apartment building in Beijing. Chinese authorities ruled that the villa was built illegally and should be dismantled after video of the building went viral on the internet earlier this month. The massive structure, adorned with imitation rocks, plants, a pavillion and a pond, drew complaints from its neighbours and a government warning to tear it down. Last Monday (August 12), authorities demanded that the owner, Zhang Biqing, demolish the construction, estimated to cover around 800 square metres, within 15 days, calling it an illegal structure, after residents complained to the local government. Zhang, who at that time said he was away on a trip to south-west Yunnan province, promised to demolish the sections that were not approved on time when contacted by phone by urban development officials. Zhang, who owns the 340-square-metre duplex penthouse on the top floor of the building, told official newspaper China Daily that the illegal part of his villa only occupied 40 to 50 square metres. China Daily reported that many of his neighbours had complained about the lavish rooftop add-on since 2007. Their complaints included construction noise and safety concerns, and some of them said Zhang also liked to play loud music and sing late at night.
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