Reply To: Road built around house as Chinese couple refuse to move (BBC)

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A five-storey home marooned in the middle of a new road in China for more than a year because its owner refused to leave has finally been demolished.

The road, in China’s’s eastern Zhejiang province, was built around the house because duck farmer Luo Baogen was holding out for more compensation.

Mr Luo, 67, said he had just finished the home at a cost of $95,000 and had been offered only $35,000 to move.

Officials say he finally accepted $41,000, and the bulldozers moved in.

Media attention
The home had earned the nickname “nail house” because, like a stubborn nail, it was difficult to move.

China’s official Xinhua news agency said Mr Luo and his wife had accepted the new compensation offer and had moved to a relocation area with the help of relatives on Saturday morning.

Luo Baogen speaks, before he accepted a deal to move out
The agency described the situation as “bizarre” and having “achieved notoriety” because of images posted online.

It quoted Mr Luo as saying: “It was never a final solution for us to live in a lone house in the middle of the road. After the government’s explanations, I finally decided to move.”

Xiayangzhang village chief Chen Xuecai told the Associated Press news agency Mr Luo had grown tired of the media attention, saying the home owner “had received dozens of people from the media every day”.

The road is a key infrastructure project – linking the city to a new railway station on the outskirts.

Mr Luo was the only owner of 459 households to reject the relocation plans.

The case has highlighted what is a major cause of unrest in China, as huge infrastructure and real estate developments spark hundreds of thousands of relocations.

Many people come under extreme pressure to leave, although Mr Luo has said this has not been his experience.