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Atlantic City Auctioning Chance to Blowup Trump Casino

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As a result of 2020, everyone needs to blow off some steam.

And there’s one lucky bidder who can win the chance to take out personal pandemic-era rage on one of Atlantic City’s most notorious abandoned buildings. This week, Mayor Marty Small announced that the city will auction off a chance to press the button that implodes Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino.

Ghosted Casino

Donald Trump first developed the site in 1984, adding to Atlantic City’s then burgeoning skyline. But the casino permanently closed in 2014, following a stream of company layoffs. By then, Trump had already sold off the majority of his ownership, retaining only 10% of Trump Entertainment Resorts, the casino’s parent company. The company had previously declared bankruptcy in 2009, and filed for Chapter 11 protection again in 2014. It has lain vacant on the Atlantic City strip ever since.

Six years later, the ghosted building is finally primed for demolition, which is slated for January 29. But Mayor Small saw an opportunity to raise money for an important cause. Hence, Bodnar’s Auction, an independent auction house, will sell to the highest bidder the chance to press the demolition button. The auctioneer specified that it would “be done remotely and can be done [from] anywhere in the world.”

Good Cause

As for the proceeds, Mayor Small says that the city will donate the money to Boys & Girls Club of Atlantic City. The nonprofit offers services for urban children and teenagers. “I wanted to use the demolition of this place to raise money for charity,” Small told The Associated Press. But he may also have a personal axe to grind.

“Some of Atlantic City’s iconic moments happened there,” the Democratic mayor said of the casino, “but on his way out, Donald Trump openly mocked Atlantic City, saying he made a lot of money and then got out.”

The casino, now owned by billionaire Carl Icahn, is one of three major properties in Atlantic City that once bore the Trump name. But while Trump’s Taj Mahal and the Trump Marina have been renamed and repurposed, Trump Plaza has withered in disrepair for years. Earlier this year, a video went viral showing high winds tearing off pieces of the Plaza’s crumbling exterior. Icahn and city officials reached an agreement to demolish the structure shortly thereafter.


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