As Donald Trump continues to try to dodge the reality that he lost the election and will no longer be president in 70 days, one has to wonder what he’s going to miss the most once he’s left the White House.
He may not even be aware of it, but on Jan. 20, 2021, the privilege of using the helipad to speed his comings and goings at the Mar-a-Lago estate that will be his post-presidential home expires.
When Trump became president and it became clear that the 17.5 acre property would be a “winter White House,” the Palm Beach Town Council approved the construction of the 50-foot, 8-inch-deep concrete helipad on the west lawn of the ocean-to-lake estate. Since then Marine One helicopters have routinely whisked Trump to and from the property.
But the town’s leaders also stipulated that it approved the helipad “for business relating solely to the office of the president.” It also said the helipad must be removed once the president leaves office.
Tony Palm Beach doesn’t allow helipads or helicopters out of concern that the island could end up like other posh communities where helicopters buzz the super rich in and out.
The entire time Trump has been in office neighbors have complained about the noise and down draft from the massive Marine One helicopters. Town leaders had thought it would be a lesser evil than having Trump ride by car from Palm Beach International Airport without causing long traffic jams and road closures. To their chagrin, use of the helipad did not change Secret Service protection protocols that to this day mandate the closure of roads around Mar-a-Lago whenever the president’s helicopter is in the air.