Trump fought legislation requiring sprinklers in NYC buildings

Trump fought legislation requiring sprinklers in NYC buildings

President Trump has a complicated history with the life-saving sprinklers the Trump Tower residential quarters lacked during a deadly fire Saturday.

Nearly two decades ago, Trump, then one of the Big Apple’s most prominent real estate moguls, lobbied against Mayor Rudy Giuliani-era legislation that considered whether sprinklers should be installed in all residential buildings after two fatal fires in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

The 1998 fires, which sparked sweeping building code changes, killed three firefighters at the NYCHA-run housing for seniors and four more died of smoke inhalation at an Upper West Side high-rise where child actor Macaulay Culkin's family lived.

Donald Trump (seen in 2005 showing Trump World Tower) once battled an NYC bill that suggested requiring all residential buildings to install sprinklers.

(Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The Brooklyn home had sprinklers but they were turned off at the time of the blaze. The 51-story Manhattan building also had sprinklers, but only on the first 10 floors for commercial tenants.

Trump Tower blaze kills man on floor without sprinklers

Trump called city officials like famed Queens politician Archie Spigner, whose council committee compiled the bill, to argue that sprinklers were too expensive — at $4 per square foot — to install throughout an entire building, the New York Times reported at the time.

A man died in a 50th floor apartment at Trump Tower, which lacks sprinklers, on Saturday.

A man died in a 50th floor apartment at Trump Tower, which lacks sprinklers, on Saturday.

(Peter Gerber)

Early talks for the proposed bill suggested that all residential buildings be required to install sprinklers, which irked developers, including Trump.

The future president backed off on panning the proposal after it was tweaked to grandfather existing buildings — such as Trump Tower — or structures for which building permits had already been filed, such as the Trump World Tower. Construction on the 72-floor building opposite the United Nations began in 1999.

Residents from a high rise apartment building on New York's West 60th Street try to keep warm on Dec. 23, 1998, after a fire broke out in two apartments in the building. Four people were found dead in the smoke-filled hallways on the 27th and 29th floors.

Residents from a high rise apartment building on New York's West 60th Street try to keep warm on Dec. 23, 1998, after a fire broke out in two apartments in the building. Four people were found dead in the smoke-filled hallways on the 27th and 29th floors.

(JEFF GEISSLER/AP)

He ultimately spent $3 million on sprinklers for his Trump World Tower.

Fire breaks out on Trump Tower roof

Even then, Trump admittedly failed to see the purpose that sprinklers served in high-rise buildings like his own.

EXP;

The other 1998 blaze left three firefighters dead in NYCHA-run housing for seniors in the Canarse, Brooklyn.

(Arthur Degaeta for New York Daily News)

"People feel safer with sprinklers," Trump said, according to the Times. "But the problem with the bill is that it doesn't address the buildings that need sprinklers the most. If you look at the fire deaths in New York, almost all of them are in one- or two-family houses."

Giuliani signed the bill in March of that year, with a provision that required developers to install sprinklers when high-rise rentals undergo renovations.

NYC PAPERS OUT. Social media use restricted to low res file max 184 x 128 pixels and 72 dpi

Trump spent $3 million on sprinklers for his Trump World Tower.

(Bryan Pace for New York Daily News)

The fire that erupted inside Trump Tower on Saturday killed art dealer Todd Brassner at his 50th floor pad, where the law never mandated sprinklers to be equipped.

FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro said at a press conference that even though building's residential units lacked sprinklers, the building "stood up quite well."

Trump mirrored Nigro's remarks in a tweet that applauded firefighters, before news of the fatality surfaced.

"Fire at Trump Tower is out," Trump tweeted. "Very confined (well built building). Firemen (and women) did a great job. THANK YOU!"

The cause of Brassner’s death was not immediately known.

Send a Letter to the Editor
Join the Conversation:
facebook
Tweet

ADVERTISEMENT


Source link : http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/trump-fought-legislation-requiring-sprinklers-nyc-buildings-article-1.3921642
Author :
Publish date : 2018-04-08 11:42:00
share on: