The pain of living in a building called Trump

23rd Nov, 2016

US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is a real estate magnate with tens of high end buildings to his name. To many who resided in Trump buildings, saying you lived at a Trump building was almost a point of pride. Not so any more, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The paper reports that Trumps polarising campaign for president has turned a segment of the population against him, and “home has become an uncomfortable place for some.” According to the piece, at several Trump buildings, residents are quietly petitioning to get rid of his name.

“I used to tell people I lived in Trump Place. Now I say I live at 66th and Riverside Boulevard,’’ Sandra Brod, 74, is quoted as saying. “He has a mouth like a sewer.”

Whereas a spokeswoman for the Trump Organisation souught to allay any fears and insisted that the company is “not political” and remains focused on providing “residents and guests of our properties the highest levels of luxury and service”, residents have a different experience.

The LA Times reports that anti-Trump protesters have hurled eggs at the glass-and-granite facades of the row of Trump buildings where Brod lives. At other buildings, they’ve dumped excrement.

“His flagship Trump Tower, a 63-story monolith on Fifth Avenue where Trump lives in a penthouse, has become a focal point for Trump fans — more than a hundred gathered there to cheer him the day after a damaging tape was released in which he boasted of groping women,” says the report.

“The middle fingers are nonstop,’’  Paul Rose, a 54-year-old comedian dressed as a piece of excrement who was selling “Dump Trump” posters and lapel pins on the sidewalk, told the LA Times.

And that is not all. Some New Yorkers refuse to attend events at Trump buildings. Sample this: “Ilana Broad, a 26-year-old lawyer who was invited to a brunch near the United Nations, said she was shocked when she arrived at the address on the invitation and discovered it was an apartment in Trump World Tower. Before going in, she took a selfie raising a middle finger at the building and sent it to friends on Snapchat.”

One resident, sold his $3.8-million (Sh380 million) condominium in Trump Palace with its stunning skyline views because he could no longer bear to be associated with the Trump name. “I got out with 90% of my money and 100% of my soul,’’ he tweeted in July upon completing the sale.

Prices of units currently for sale in Trump buildings range from $660,000 (Sh66 million) for a studio to $40 million (Sh4 billion) for a six-bedroom apartment overlooking Central Park.

Most of the buildings pay the Trump Organization for the use of the name — and are bound by contract to do so. Removing his name would not be easy.

Niko Waks

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