March 2, 2012

Donald J. Trump is chairman and president of the Trump Organization.

Over the past year, I have been outspoken in expressing my love for this country and emphasizing the importance of making America great again. One of the reasons I am proud to be a real estate developer is that, for the past several decades, my company has accomplished what many said was impossible.

From building iconic properties from the ground up (such as New York’s Trump Tower and Trump International Hotel and Tower Chicago), to restoring historic landmarks (including 40 Wall Street, the facade of Grand Central Terminal and the legendary Plaza Hotel), to revitalizing and building communities (exemplified by the redevelopments of the Commodore Hotel and the West Side Yards project), we have continued to challenge ourselves to surpass even our own demanding expectations. All that said, in today’s marketplace one of the most important responsibilities and goals that I have as a developer and business operator is to create tens of thousands of jobs and bring beauty and life to key cities across the world. I intend to do just that at the Old Post Office building on Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Washington.

On Feb. 7, the Trump Organization was selected by the General Services Administration (GSA) for the most sought-after hotel redevelopment opportunity in the country. We will serve as sponsor, developer, brand and operator and will shepherd the Old Post Office building through every stage of concept, redevelopment and operations. We are both humbled and honored to have been chosen for this important job and will bring to bear all of our resources and experience to create something that Washingtonians and D.C. visitors alike will be proud of for decades to come.

We recognize that the greatest assets of this beautiful building are its iconic exterior facade, interior cortile and soaring clock tower, and we intend to meticulously preserve these historic elements. We are confident that the hotel, once completed, will become one of the most visited attractions in the city. The clock tower, with its incredible 360-degree views of the District, will continue to be open to the public, and members of the Washington Ringing Society will be able to continue their tradition of ringing the Congress Bells. Working in conjunction with the National Park Service, our goal is to create a more interactive, educational and comprehensive experience for guests and visitors.

We plan to invest more than $200 million in the building, and our 260 suites and penthouses are designed to be the most luxurious in the city. During the redevelopment process (and beyond), we look forward to working closely with the National Capital Planning Commission, U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, D.C. Historic Preservation Office, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, National Park Service, D.C. government and the GSA to carefully preserve and rehabilitate each of the Old Post Office building’s historic elements while simultaneously positioning the building for success in its new role.

Our expansive banquet facilities, ballroom and meeting spaces, as well as our sprawling spa and indoor and outdoor gardens, will further enhance our guest experience. A curated museum and exhibition gallery are planned to record and celebrate the Old Post Office building’s long and compelling history. Additionally, world-class restaurants, cafes and a bar and lounge will bring energy to the building’s unrivaled location. Spectacular outdoor-dining experiences will be created on the building’s front and back plazas. All of these amenities, and many others, will be open to the public and will bring new vitality to Pennsylvania Avenue and the District.

Importantly, Trump International Hotel, The Old Post Office Building, Washington, D.C., will create approximately 500 jobs during construction and another 500 permanent jobs once the hotel is operational. In addition to finally allowing this great building to achieve its full potential as a world-class hotel, turning the Old Post Office over to the private sector will provide the District economy with a much-needed boost. Our redevelopment plan will bring increased revenue to Washington and will save the American people millions in taxpayer dollars while providing the federal government with a lucrative financial return.

I look forward to preserving and repositioning this treasured landmark for D.C. residents and visitors to enjoy. When the project is completed in 2016, I feel certain that everybody will be proud of our enhancements to this already great building. We are honored by this opportunity, and we thank the GSA for placing their trust in us. We will not let you down.

The writer is chairman and president of the Trump Organization.