DOWNTOWN — Thousands of Chicagoans on the Internet think it's time to dump Donald Trump by taking his namesake skyscraper here and throwing it in the river.
A Facebook event called "It's Time to Relocate the Trump Tower to the Chicago River" has blown up in recent weeks for proposing Donald Trump's tower would be a better fit in the Chicago River, where it could "float" out of the city. More than 7,000 people say on Facebook they'll meet up Jan. 29 and help move the 98-story skyscraper at 401 N. Wabash Ave.
"We need all the help we can get to lift the Trump Tower into the Chicago River. Citizens of our city did it before with other buildings, so why can't we do the same?" the event page says. "Sick of seeing his name every day on your commute? Want it to float out of our precious lil' city? Looking for something to do on January 29th? Me too."
The event was posted Dec. 17 by Sarah Gonser, a sophomore film student at Columbia College Chicago. Inspired by the days when Chicagoans would actually lift and move buildings, she thought it'd be funny to suggest the same be done to the riverfront skyscraper and its big sign unmistakably developed by Trump, who's now a leading presidential candidate.
"Me seeing his name every day when I go into the city for school, I think of all the awful, awful things he represents and would do if he were president," said Gonser, 19, who lives in Roscoe Village. "I wish I didn't have to see that."
Motivated by the equally buzzy posting of a man who wanted to drink all of Lake Michigan, Gonser intended for the event to be a joke. But the posting quickly took off and now has people from all over offering their very serious political views and expert opinions on heavy-lifting.
"People either really love or hate [Trump] and I've definitely seen that," Gonser said.
Trump made waves in 2014 when he affixed his name to the tower with virtually no public input, and even Mayor Rahm Emanuel saying then the building was "scarred."
More recently, Trump has incurred the wrath of some Chicagoans for his remarks on the presidential campaign trail. He said Chicago was a "disaster" when it came to gun violence and was greeted by protesters after saying undocumented Mexican immigrants were "rapists."
Gonser knows attendees won't be able to actually lift the tower, but says the event is more about "what it represents." Now, she feels it may become a de facto political rally for Bernie Sanders, the Vermont Senator challenging Hillary Clinton for the Democratic party's nomination for president. Gonser said she even reached out to the Sanders campaign to see if anyone can speak at the event, and she's thinking about making and handing out "I Dumped the Trump in 2016" stickers. Representatives for the Sanders and Trump campaigns did have immediate comments on the event.
The event is set for noon Jan. 29 at Trump Tower, 401 N. Wabash Ave.
Taking complete buildings and moving them — including some by hand — was commonplace here in the 19th Century, when the city decided to lift all of Downtown off marshy ground and install a sewer system underneath.
More recently, in 2014, the city — but this time with the aid of a crane and trucks — relocated a landmarked South Loop home to make way for construction of the McCormick Place Event Center — where DePaul University will host its basketball games — and related projects.
For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: