Feature

Ground zero

Trump steps into the breach

Donald Trump has told lots of people, 'œYou're fired!' Now, said Julie Satow in The New York Sun, he wants to do the same to the designers of the Freedom Tower. Last week, the flamboyant real estate mogul proposed scrapping architect Daniel Libeskind's plans for the centerpiece of the new World Trade Center site. Instead of Libeskind's crystalline, 1,776-foot-high spire, Trump said he wants to rebuild the twin towers essentially as they were. Trump's towers, however, would be at least one story taller'”in defiance of the terrorists who destroyed them. 'œWhy are we building this monstrous skeleton known as the Freedom Tower?' he asked a packed press conference. 'œIf someone knocked down the Statue of Liberty, you wouldn't put the Eiffel Tower in its place.' The Freedom Tower, Trump said, is 'œthe worst piece-of-crap architecture I've ever seen in my life.'

When it comes to 'œpile-of-whatever architecture,' said Ellis Henican in Newsday, Trump is the expert. His 'œgarish' hotels and casinos are a blot on every skyline they touch. Granted, the Freedom Tower isn't perfect, and the ongoing delays and modifications'”caused most recently by safety concerns'”have been frustrating. But Trump doesn't care about creating a World Trade Center that's right for New York. All he cares about is erecting monuments to himself. His crass attempts to upend Libeskind's master plan reveal a man 'œwho has yet to experience his first pang of nuance or humility.' Besides, said Steve Cuozzo in the New York Post, Trump's scheme is totally impractical. The original twin towers 'œwere big, bad buildings that took nearly 30 years to fully lease.' Only somebody with the unregulated ego of the Donald would think he can do better.

Paul Beston

The American Spectator Online

Ron Rosenbaum

The New York Observer

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