These days, Donald Trump is after more than reality TV ratings and tea party zealots. America’s best-known real estate mogul is moving in on DC. With potential political aspirations and three recent real estate investments under his belt, I can’t help but ask: Could “The Donald” be our new neighbor?
In 2009, Trump redirected his luxury golf empire investments (already in New York, Florida and California) to the DC area, with the purchase of a Northern Virginia country club (Trump National Golf Club) that sits on the Potomac River.
Last summer, news broke that Trump purchased the infamous 1,000 plus acre Kluge estate and winery near Charlottesville. Currently, Trump’s son Eric is running the vineyard. And while the land is not in DC, like other Virginia wineries, it is considered a playground for District residents on the weekends.
And the latest on his list of DC purchases? A Pennsylvania Avenue address. (No, not that one…) This past year, Trump purchased the Old Post Office Building, with plans to turn the historic landmark into a luxury hotel with his daughter, Ivanka.
I can’t help but wonder what’s next… Will Trump be the one to swoop in and rescue the Lincoln Theatre? Maybe he will join the long list of luxury apartment and restaurant developers along the U and 14th Street NW Corridors?
Perhaps I am being too quick to react, but I can’t help myself from cringing at the thought of more Trump acquisitions in the District. Really, Donald Trump is no different from other real estate investors who want to capitalize on the up-swing of our nation’s capital, but each purchase in DC gives him more power and more ability to commercially exploit the city that I love so much. The last thing I want is for the District to be just another shiny souvenir the Trumps add to their shelf of conquests and collection of properties and brands.