|Equipment is carried to the building at 8B Lê Trực Street to serve the demolition of illegaly-contructed floors of the building. — VNA/VNS Photo Mạnh Khánh
HÀ NỘI — The second phase of the demolition of illegally constructed floors of a building at 8B Lê Trực Street in Hà Nội’s Ba Đình District, is expected to start on May 15.
The building, conspicuous in its proximity to Hồ Chí Minh mausoleum in the centre of Hà Nội, and the city’s struggles in handling the issue despite Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc’s repeated order to promptly settle this “long-standing issue” in the last four years, have drawn a great deal of public criticism.
Trương Văn Hải, Chairman of Bắc Nam Civil Construction Investment Joint Stock Company, which was appointed by the district People’s Committee to carry out the demolition, said that between April 22 and May 12, the company would be preparing equipment for removing the 17th and 18th floors of the building.
“The company’s workers are installing hoists in front of the building. The hoists would bring construction waste from the top of the building to the ground,” he said.
On Thursday afternoon, local authorities built fences and restricted traffic on the area around the building including Trần Phú Street. Police and security teams were at the area to ensure security for the installation of such hoists.
According to the construction licence No11/GPXD-SXD granted by Hà Nội’s Construction Department in March 24, 2014, the apartment and office building at 8B Lê Trực was licensed to have 18 storeys and four basements with total height of 53m and total floor area of 30,000 sq.m.
However, the building investor – Lê Trực Garment Joint Stock Company – built 19 floors and an attic which increased the building’s height to 69 metres and total floor area to 36,000 sq.m.
The violation was detected five years ago. In the first phase of the demolition of illegally-constructed floors since November 2015, the 19th floor and the attic were removed.
Due to the complexity of the architecture and structure of the building, the demolition in the second phase requires the removal of most of the pillars and beams of the building, which poses high risk to the whole building. Moreover, most of the areas from the 18th floor and below have been purchased.
The second stage of dismantling therefore faced opposition from the people who have bought the apartments.
At a meeting with Hà Nội’s leaders on April 20, Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc asked for solutions to ten major pending problems in the city, one of which is the postponed demolition of illegal construction at the building on Lê Trực Street.
The PM asked local authorities to tackle the violation, ensuring its construction planning in that neighbourhood as well as safety for the building. The demolition work must be done promptly as it had been delayed for years, Phúc said. —VNS