Donald Trump’s trees will soon be on the move.
In the coming months, Doral Park homes that lost their golf course views last year will gain back a fraction of their fairways.
When Trump started to renovate Trump National Doral in 2012, he decided to install a fence of bushy areca palms along the perimeter of the courses, adjoining residents’ homes. The areca palms irked more than 2,500 homeowners whose former views of green, curvy hills or glassy waters were now blocked by trees that grow dozens of feet high.
Areca palms grow thick and bushy from the ground up, ultimately becoming a screen.
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Trump said his intention was to give golfers a feeling of isolation from everything but the course. However, neighbors protested, saying that The Donald took something valuable away from them — their unobstructed views of the greens and fairways.
After months of residents petitioning, talking about filing lawsuits and asking Doral city officials to mediate between them and Trump — who has legal rights to the properties — a proposal has been approved to reposition the trees.
Doral Palms resident, David Yglesias called the solution “satisfactory.”
“I would love to have all the trees down and all that stuff, but in reality, in negotiations, you have to give and take,” Yglesias, 52, said, noting that he has a garden, and that having the trees repositioned would allow more sunlight in.
“It’s a viable solution.”
The moving of trees in common areas such as main streets will not be retouched.
Councilman Pete Cabrera said he spearheaded the efforts.
“We have been working together with representatives of several communities and have found a win-win solution that both groups feel is working,” Cabrera said. “The idea is to replant some of the trees to create a vertical blind in which the golfers will not see the homes as they approach, but many of the homes will maintain a view of the course in diagonal direction toward the greens.”
The Trump organization is preparing a small agreement for each community. So far, four communities are on board. The other four are in talks with representatives.
Some residents are a bit worried, saying that they are hoping the plan gets ironed out and set in stone.
“They would have to relocate hundreds — if not thousands — of trees,” said resident Norm Parsons.
“This may be a solution for some, but some of the people out there will not get any relief,” he added, noting that some properties don’t have the land space to space the trees apart diagonally.
Ed Russo, a South Florida spokesman for Trump who has been hand-on in the resort’s beautification project, says he hopes residents put some trust in Trump.
“Give me a chance,” he said. “Give us a chance to consider what we can do to make some minor adjustments so you can have some sense of viewship.”
Russo has been in talks with community members from the beginning. He says moving the trees around is a reasonable compromise.
“I’m not only happy not only with the solution, but I’m happy with the process,” he said.