Man Must Tear Down Beijing's Wildest Illegal Structure

It sits atop 26-story building

By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 13, 2013 7:02 AM CDT

(Newser) – Most people would be content to occupy the penthouse apartment atop a 26-story building in Beijing. Not, apparently, a man identified as Zhang Biqing. The South China Morning Post reports that the "eccentric resident"—a "medicine mogul" who owns a chain of acupuncture clinics—has spent the last six years constructing an illegal structure above his top-floor apartment, and it's a bizarre one. The Post describes it as equal to the height of a two-story structure and the width and depth of the entire building (and then some), an 8,600-square-foot mansion complete with rooms, trees, grass, and bushes. Now, he's been given 15 days to take it all down.

This after photos of the "villa" were splashed across Chinese media yesterday, emblazoned with the headline, "Beijing's most outrageous illegal structure." (Zhang, for his part, calls it "just an ornamental garden," reports the AP.) Residents for years have complained—about construction noise, leaks, and potential structural damage to the building as a whole. The story gets weirder from there, at least according to local papers, which say Zhang has beat up a 77-year-old man "several times" after he complained about it.

This Aug. 12, 2013 photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency shows a residential building with a rocky style villa on its roof, in Haidian District of Beijing, China.
This Aug. 12, 2013 photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency shows a residential building with a rocky style villa on its roof, in Haidian District of Beijing, China.   (AP Photo/Xinhua, Luo Xiaoguang)
Beijing authorities are planning to demolish the bizarre rooftop villa embedded in rocks, trees and bushes that allegedly was built illegally atop a 26-story apartment block in the capital.
Beijing authorities are planning to demolish the bizarre rooftop villa embedded in rocks, trees and bushes that allegedly was built illegally atop a 26-story apartment block in the capital.   (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
A man looks at a roof top villa with binoculars from an overhead bridge in Beijing, China, Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013.
A man looks at a roof top villa with binoculars from an overhead bridge in Beijing, China, Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013.   (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
A rooftop villa complete with rocks and flora seen built on top of a high rise residential building stands in Beijing, China, Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013.
A rooftop villa complete with rocks and flora seen built on top of a high rise residential building stands in Beijing, China, Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013.   (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
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