Beijing: Chinese officials have ordered the demolition of a 1,000 sq ft rock-covered roof-top villa built atop a 26-story building here by a wealthy man after neighbours raised security concerns.
Photos of the penthouse with an elaborate garden built atop the building in downtown Beijing went viral both in the official print media and among the microblogs with questions how the luxury structure was allowed to come up.
As the roof-top house took the media limelight, the urban management bureau of Haidian District has deemed the man-made rooftop oasis as a piece of illegal construction.
The bureau posted a notice on the door to the apartment yesterday asking the builder to dismantle it within 15 days, state run Xinhua news agency reported today.
The action was taken only now though public had complained about it since its construction started in 2007.
Photos show that the building covered in a man-made mound dotted with artificial rocks, greenery and a swimming pool.
The bureau said that the villa was built by a man named Zhang Biqing, the owner of the duplex penthouse on the top floor of the building.
He was reportedly a wealthy Chinese medicine practitioner known for his therapies for treating difficult illnesses, such as cervical spondylosis.
Official media reports Zhang was a former member of the advisory legislative body, the Chinese People`s Political Consultative Conference of the Haidian District Committee.
According to property management staff of the Park View residential community, Zhang has paid the property management fees for his apartment, which had a floor space of more than 340 square meters before the roof-top villa was built.
Neighbours have long complained that the construction of the villa, which started in 2007, has caused gas and water leaks that have affected several apartments on lower floors.
They are also concerned about potential safety hazards brought on by the construction.
The property management company and urban management staff have both failed to reach Zhang, the report said.