'The most beautiful illegal constructions' of Haikou look like train running through the city
Usually illegal constructions in China are thought to be of low safety standard, shoddy quality, dull appearance or atop other buildings, but the one in Haikou is not the case.
As Haikou enters into the year of city management, the capital city of China’s southernmost island Hainan province, has been campaigning against illegal constructions.
On November 5th, villagers in Fu’an village, Meilan district, reported a group of "illegal constructions" in their village to the authority, Xinhua reported.
The "illegal constructions" consist of five separate but closely adjoining two-storey buildings that are all of antique architectural style with same grey sloping rooftop. The first floor is built with stones and the second is wooden.
In sharp contrast to the surrounding rambling, dull and grey concrete forest, the five two-storey constructions, supposed to be built with exquisite workmanship, should have been a nice place to go for a walk, or for shopping.
The problem is, the five buildings are standing right in the middle of the planed extension of Haitong Road within the Fu’an village, making the already narrow road almost impossible for cars to run through especially during the rush hours, or during the time when school is open and closed, and when housewives come out shopping vegetables.
As the planned road is not a straight line but a little curvy, the five buildings look like carriages of a train passing through the concrete jungle if looked from the air.
A reporter from People's Daily did some investigation and told us the reason why they were illegal:
The place where the “illegal constructions” stand has been planned for an extension of the Haitong Road. In 2009, Haikou government granted the usufruct to a company to build a Residents-facilitating office but shortly the project was cancelled. And then The Hainan Fu’an South Farm Products Market Management Co., Ltd. rented the area from Fu’an village committee and built these constructions without license and permission from the higher authorities (such as City Planning Bureau, Chengguan Office, etc.).
The constructions opened to the public in the name of Fu’an Farm Products Market in the south and Fu’an Street Market in the north in this July, but was shortly shut down due to unqualified fire protection facilities.
Shortly after pictures of the illegal constructions surfaced on Chinese online media, some Chinese netizens that appreciate their exquisite workmanship and architectural style honor them with the title “The Most Beautiful Illegal Constructions” of China, which has gained wide popularity among China’s online population.
But this title is not enough to protect them from the usual fate of such constructions. As soon as the buildings gain media attention, the pressure on local authorities has mounted to a high enough level to take swift action. And of course, the simplest and once-for-all measure is always, well, demolishing them, by force if necessary.
Hainan News Center reported on Sunday:
The Chengguan office (or city management office) of Meilan district issued a notice on November 10th to the The Hainan Fu’an South Farm Products Market Management Co., Ltd., ordering the illegal constructions be demolished by the company itself by November 14th.
[Images via: 0898.net]