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Trump Jr. Visits City Hall To Discuss Unused Space At Trump Tower

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Donald Trump Jr. was at City Hall on Thursday to meet with Ald. Brendan Reilly about the possibility of opening a restaurant, offices, or retail space in the long-vacant lower levels of Trump Tower.

Trump Jr. did not speak to reporters as he left City Hall at about 10:25 a.m., or when he arrived at Trump Tower a short time later, but Reilly said the two discussed possible tenants for 65,000 square feet of vacant space in Trump Tower.

Reilly said The Trump Organization -- the Trump family's real estate business -- requested the meeting two weeks ago to discuss possible uses for space on the lower levels of Trump Tower that has been vacant since the building opened in 2009. The building also has a large riverfront plaza that, to date, has gone unused.

"They're, I think, getting ready to aggressively market that space, and that was the purpose of that meeting," Reilly said.

Although they did not get into discussions of any specific tenants, Reilly said Trump Jr. and representatives of the Trump Hotel discussed the possibility of a riverfront restaurant, retail space, shared office space, or a mix of all three.

Reilly said he would be open to any of those possibilities, but made it clear that "quality of life is an issue."

"We don't want to have a lot of loud music and disruptive behavior on the river, because there are thousands of residents that live nearby, but other than that I said I'm happy to react to whatever options they bring to me," Reilly said.

Although Reilly said he disagrees with President Donald Trump on just about every issue, he treats The Trump Organization no different than any other business that owns property in his ward.

"I've got strong opinions, and it requires a little bit of discipline, but again they're a business owner and I have to kind of put on my blinders and treat them like I'd treat anybody else," he said. "We want the property to be successful. Obviously, new operations down at the river level mean more jobs, expanding the tax base. Those are good things, no matter who the organization is."

That's Donald Trump Jr. at Trump Tower. He met with 42nd ward Alderman Brendan Reilly to talk about filling 65,000...

Posted by Dorothy Tucker on Thursday, June 28, 2018

The alderman also said the meeting was kept to strictly business, not politics.

"There was an acknowledgement that the Trump brand, in certain areas, is not well-regarded, but we didn't really get deep into any of that conversation. I didn't want to get into political conversation. I wanted to keep it strictly to business, and the property," he said.

Reilly said he isn't sure why the Trump organization has not approached him before now about possible tenants for the long-vacant space on the lower levels of Trump Tower, but speculated the company likely has grown weary of not making any money off it.

The alderman said, while he has met with Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump, and other representatives of the Trump Organization before about Trump Tower, this was the first time they discussed possible uses for the riverfront space.

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