Donald Trump breaks ground at Toronto tower site
Donald Trump's "gold shovel" has officially made its mark on downtown Toronto.
The renowned businessman broke ground at the future site of Toronto's Trump International Hotel and Tower on Friday.
The 900-foot building will be located at the southeast corner of Bay and Adelaide streets, and promises to be "an incredible new standard of luxurious living," according to the building's website.
"It will be five-star -- at least," Donald Trump told CTV Newsnet after the ceremony.
Tower suites, already up for sale, cost between $1.6 million and $19 million. Penthouses carry a $19-million price tag.
Construction is scheduled to be completed by 2010.
"At the opening ceremony, you'll see one of the most beautiful buildings in North America," Trump said.
"More than $300 million worth of apartments have already been sold -- already, it's a success."
The building was originally slated to be 70-storeys high, but the planned height was recently dropped down to 57 storeys.
Rumours have attributed the scaling back to poor sales, but Trump said elevator construction was the issue.
"We changed the design a little bit because of elevator service ... the elevator companies didn't want to go to that level," Trump said.
"It's the same size building, but it's actually of a higher quality."
The project, a joint venture with Talon International Development, is the only one of its kind in Canada.
When asked why he chose Toronto over other Canadian locations, such as Montreal and Vancouver, Trump said he loves the city -- and the prime downtown location tipped the scales.
"We were able to buy the single, best piece of land in Toronto," Trump said.
The original Trump International Hotel and Tower is located in New York. Projects are planned for other cities worldwide, including Dubai, UAE; Panama City, Panama; and Aberdeen, Scotland.
With a report from CTV's Roger Petersen