Before presidential hopeful Donald Trump took the stage in Cleveland, a video narrated by actor Jon Voight praised the candidate for his real estate prowess.
“He took over another city project tied up in red tape since 1978,” Voight said. “Donald transformed a landfill into a championship public golf course and saved the city millions.” But there is one problem with that statement, according to NYC officials: it isn’t true.
“He did not build the golf course,” Adrian Benepe, who was New York City’s parks commissioner under Mayor Michael Bloomberg, told the New York Times. “The city built the golf course. Trump came in as the operator.”
Back in the 1970s, Mayor Edward Koch announced that the closed 192-acre landfill would be capped with a golf course. But nothing ever happened. Then, Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani finally selected a developer, but toxic substances in the soil put the project on hold. The city terminated that contract in 2006, according to the Times.
Finally, Mayor Bloomberg decided the city would build the course itself, using city contractors.
Eventually in 2010, the city selected the Trump Organization to operate the golf course. Under its contract with the Parks Department, Trump was responsible for building a $10 million clubhouse and ensuring that grass grew on the greens.
By the time it opened, costs had ballooned and now Ferry Point has the highest fees of any municipal golf course. It costs $144 for a city resident during the week, and $172 on the weekends. [NYT] –Christopher Cameron