As Donald Trump, the world's most famous multifamily developer, continues to his run to the Republican nomination for president, the editors of Multifamily Executive went through their archives to pull their interviews with Trump and stories about the developer and his family. Here's a piece that ran in the January 2004 magazine:
The Donald is at it again. Despite being in the midst of launching "The Apprentice," a new reality television series where 16 people vie to be his assistant, Donald Trump has found time to taunt the residents of One Central Park—the luxury condominium towers that are part of the Time Warner Center on Columbus Circle in New York.
His issue? The Related Group LLC, the New York-based developer of the condos, claim its units offer spectacular views of Central Park. Not so, says Trump, whose Trump International Hotel and Tower stands between the condos and the park.
Sign From Above
After seeing The Related Group's ads, Trump decided he had seen enough. His response? A three-story tall sign on the south-facing side of Trump International greeting residents of One Central Park with "Your views aren't so great, are they? We have the real Central Park views and the address! Best wishes, 'The Donald!"
While The Related Group would not answer questions about Trump's signs, the company takes the high road in its prepared statement for the media. "We applaud Mr. Trump's competitive spirit."
Trump International is sold out and already "a great success," according to Trump, so he didn't need to generate any more attention to the building. Instead the sign was simply calling attention to what he says were The Related Group's less-than-honest advertising practices. "I got the idea from readings the ads for Time Warner," he says. "We have the real park views, and they don't. I said, 'Gee whiz, I think we need to do something about this' and that's [how it] happened."
And, the addresses back Trump up. While the Time Warner towers are named One Central Park, their address is technically 25 Columbus Circle. Trump International Tower actually has the address No. 1 Central Park West.
However, if success is judged by sales price, The Related Group is on top. On Dec. 1, 2003, it sold one penthouse for $40 million, which was the largest single residential real estate transaction in the history of New York, according to The Related Group and The Corcoran Group, which brokered the deal.
"Time Warner Center is one of the most successful condominium projects in the history of New York," the spokesperson says. "Our buyers and prospective purchasers have had overwhelmingly favorable reactions to the spectacular vistas of Central Park and New York, as well as the extraordinary design and architecture of the building."
But Trump's sign still hangs across the street. Despite the stir it caused, he may do it again in a similar situation. "It's certainly unique and different," he says.