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Old Posted Sep 1, 2010, 5:08 PM
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Gary Barnett vs. Donald Trump



Quote:
Even if they are not sworn rivals, Gary Barnett's Extell Development Company has been a thorn in Donald Trump's side since 2005. That was when Extell and the Carlyle Group bought the 77-acre parcel overlooking the Hudson River that the Donald had owned for 30 years.

Trump's grand plans to develop the area were largely stymied by neighborhood opposition. And at the time of the Extell purchase, Trump owned only a 30 percent interest in the property, while his Hong Kong-based partners, the Cheng Group, owned a controlling 70 percent.

The Donald mounted a series of legal challenges against the sale. The last came in 2008, when he accused Extell and Carlyle of orchestrating an unlawful purchase of the site. "I can understand Trump being … jealous," said one source. "He started that whole West Side project and then lost it. [The Cheng Group] decided to sell the remaining chunks to Extell. Trump didn't want that."

To rub salt in the wound, Barnett's forthcoming Carnegie 57, located across from Carnegie Hall on 57th Street, is now slated to surpass Trump World Tower as the tallest residential building in New York City.

Barnett called Trump's lawsuits against him "a waste of everybody's money."

But Barnett said he doesn't consider the two men rivals and said they have "a good relationship."

"We get along well," Barnett said. "I wish he wouldn't sue people at the drop of a hat, but that's Donald -- what are you going to do? He likes to sue people."

As far as Carnegie 57, Barnett said: "Nobody's trying to build taller than the other guy. You build what makes sense for the location. I think Donald would agree with that."

Trump, too, said he and Barnett have a "nice relationship" and he doesn't harbor negative feelings toward him regarding Riverside South.

"I don't think of him as a rival, but I think of him as a talented guy who's doing a good job in New York," Trump told The Real Deal.


Trump's anger surrounding the fate of the Riverside South parcel appears to be alive and well, but he reserves his invective for Columbia University President Lee Bollinger. Columbia had been close to buying land on the Hudson from Trump for an expansion of its campus, but that deal fell through when Bollinger took over.

Bollinger is "terrible," Trump said. "He could have made such a great deal for Columbia and he blew it."

The land was later sold to Extell instead.
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