Mayor Gregor Robertson has added his voice to the already loud chorus calling for the removal of the Trump name from one of Vancouver’s newest and tallest skyscrapers.
“Over 50,000 people have now signed a petition asking that the Trump name be removed from Holborn’s signature new tower on West Georgia Street in Downtown Vancouver,” reads a letter Robertson wrote to the tower's developer.
"It is their belief, and my belief, that Trump’s name and brand have no more place on Vancouver’s skyline than his ignorant ideas have in the modern world," it continues. "As Mayor, it is my hope that you and your company will work quickly to remove his brand and all it represents from your building.”
Robertson’s letter was sent to Joo Kim Tiah, CEO of the Holborn Group, on December 15.
It follows a week of international outrage that erupted after Donald Trump, a leading Republican contender in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, suggested America ban all Muslims from entering the country.
“Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on,” reads a December 7 statement released via Trump’s campaign website.
“Without looking at the various polling data, it is obvious to anybody the hatred is beyond comprehension,” Trump said quoted there. “Where this hatred comes from and why we will have to determine. Until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses, our country cannot be the victims of horrendous attacks by people that believe only in Jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life.”
In his letter, Robertson argued Trump’s stated views on minorities are not compatible with Vancouver’s multicultural character.
“As Mayor, I’m proud that Vancouver is known throughout the world for our steadfast commitment to diversity, equality, and freedom from discrimination and hatred. Vancouver is enriched by that diversity, and being a city where people can live and thrive regardless of their gender, sexuality, faith, or ethnicity,” Robertson wrote.
“That kind of openness represents the very best of today’s Canada, and is a key reason why Vancouver is such a desirable place to live.
“In contrast, Donald Trump’s hateful positions and commentary remind us all of much darker times in our world’s past – and it is incumbent upon all of us to forcefully challenge hatred in all of the ways that it confronts us.”
Trump does not own the Vancouver tower. The Holborn Group paid to use the Trump name for branding and marketing purposes.
The Holborn Group responded to calls for Trump’s name to be removed from their tower with a statement released on December 9.
“Holborn is a Vancouver-based private real estate development company that owns Trump Vancouver,” it reads in part. “Holborn, a company that has contributed immensely to the growth of Vancouver, is not in any way involved in US politics. As such, we would not comment further on Mr. Trump’s personal or political agenda, nor any political issues, local or foreign.”
The 63-story Trump International Hotel and Tower is scheduled to open in the fall of 2016.