Trump Tower is no ordinary property: It is the jewel in Donald Trump's brass crown. He lives at the top in a three-story penthouse with his third wife and third son. But it's more than just Trump's home. With its flashy outward image barely concealing a rotting, garbage-filled core, it's a metaphor for the man. A visit to the building' public gardens, which he agreed to create in 1979 in exchange for the rights to make his Tower 20 floors higher, reveals the truth. Let's take a stroll through his messy rest stop for a glimpse of the kind of care and attention that Americans can expect from a President Trump.
A gleaming brass entrance beckons to the public—a gateway to the greatness that Trump promises all Americans. What wonders does this magical palace hold?
A quick glance at the ground floor building directory provides the first sign that something is awry. It lists… nothing. There is literally no there there.
To get to the public garden, you must ascend the "Escalator of Kings" that Trump made famous when announcing his candidacy in June, 2015. On 17 October 2016, however, the escalator between the third and fourth floors was broken. The next day, two escalators were broken. The day after that, those two were fixed… and another was broken. "The only one in the country to fix our infrastructure is me," tweeted Donald Trump in May. Perhaps he should start with these escalators and then work his way up to the bridges and airports.
On the fourth floor tower two trophy cases—each empty. Doesn't Barron at least have a snow globe collection that he could stick in one of these? There's another case on the fifth floor that showcases a perfectly lit….nothing. Seriously, this building is like a giant metaphor museum.
The fourth-floor Public Garden is closed "due to construction" and, based on my return visits, has been that way for well over a month, with no sign of actual constructing. So that 1979 deal to provide 15,000 square feet of public space seems to be going about as well as his promise to give money to victims of 9/11 or his first two wedding vows.
The fifth floor public garden is actually open. Over the course of many visits there this fall, I never saw more than a smattering of visitors. In September there was a man conspicuously hiding behind the large tree planters. He appeared to be waiting for the opportunity to pee. That's pretty much the vibe.
Once in the garden, waving U.S. flags offer a show of patriotism because, you know… 'Merica. But as you approach the flags and look to your far right, you see…
A dirty wall, a discarded ladder and a pile of garbage.
Here's a closer look of Mr. Trump's garbage. It's been in that public space since early September, around the time when Trump declared in Greenville, N.C., "This is our chance to solve all of the problems that have gone unsolved for so many years." One problem jumps to mind that could be solved in a few minutes by a quick trip to the dumpster.
This photo was also taken in September, when the temperature in New York City was still in the 90s thanks to the Chinese and their pesky Climate Change hoax. An effective water feature can create a misty, cooling microclimate, but why bother spending that money when the only people who visit are nasty women and bad hombres?
Trump once famously declared, "I will build a great wall—and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me—and I'll build them very inexpensively." The last part is definitely true, judging by this undeniably cheap construction.
Look! An actual example of someone literally trying to fit a round peg in a square hole. Plus an exposed outlet. They're probably both Obama's fault.
A Crain's article from June of this year pointed out a dead tree in the garden. Update: it's still dead! Sad.
"You land at LaGuardia, you land at Kennedy, you land at LAX, you land at Newark, and you come in from Dubai and Qatar [and] China, you see these incredible airports, and you land―we've become a Third World country," said Trump, around the time that his own building looked like this.
Leaving the public garden, I headed to the lower level and passed the Trump Grill, where the door to the pantry was open. Stainless steel appliances are, as Trump would say, the best. They are tremendous. But they are a little more expensive than regular white, so what do you do? Theoretically, you put a stainless-steel sticker sheet over the white and fool someone into thinking they are seeing "the actual best." Sure, eventually the veneer will peel off and reveal the con, but let some other sap worry about the future.
In the women's room, I stumbled upon this open door to a utility closet. Norman Rockwell should paint this tableau of pure Trumpicana, from the aspirational pages torn from magazines (sailboats, campfires, wedding dresses) to the giant rolls of toilet paper, to the Trump bumper stickers. And to offer a parting metaphor, there are two little electric fans indicating sub-standard ventilation: To vote for Trump, you gotta hold your nose and keep dreaming.