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'Last house standing' to be pulled down
Latest Updated by 2007-03-21 09:14:26
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A CHONGQING court Monday (Mar 19) ordered residents of a house, which stood by itself in the middle of an otherwise-vacant construction site in Jiulongpo District for more than two years, to move out before Thursday, after which the house will be demolished.

Photos of the two-story house have been circulated widely across the Internet after an anonymous Web surfer uploaded them recently. A large business center had been planned on the site where the house is currently located, and all 280 other families living on the plot moved out after construction started in September 2004. Their houses were subsequently pulled down.

Now the house stands alone atop a 20-meter-high mound in the middle of a gigantic construction site.

Yang Wu, the house's owner, had reportedly asked for 20 million yuan (US$2.56 million) in compensation from the developer, according to the Southern Metropolis Daily.

Yang's wife Wu Ping denied the claim Monday.

"We didn't asked for that (20 million yuan). We only hoped to be compensated with a same-sized apartment at the original location on the same floor and with same exposure to the sun,"said Wu.

But the authorities said the demand was neither in accordance with the law, nor realistic. The real estate company that is developing the area said it had negotiated with the family dozens of times but could not achieve a breakthrough.

Nearby residents told reporters that the house has been uninhabited since September 2004, but Wu said that was because the real estate company cut off the water and electricity supply.

The 219-square-meter house is estimated to be worth about 2.47 million yuan. The real estate company once promised the family 3.5 million yuan in order to entice them to move out sooner. The Jiulongpo district house regulator ruled Jan. 11 that the family would receive a house in another area after they moved out. Wu didn't obey the ruling and the regulator then filed a lawsuit asking for demolition by force.

Editor: Wing

By: Source: Szdaily web edition
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