Trump’s Mississippi hotel delayed as the family business takes it down a notch

But the Trumps have announced only one Scion business partner, the developers of the hotel here in Cleveland, a city of 12,000 about a two-hour drive from Memphis. The Trumps and their partners have delayed the project as they revised the construction plans.

This week, the partners applied for a new permit at Cleveland’s community development office, an indication that they were close to getting started again, said Brett Moorman, the co-director of the office, who has been fielding questions from the community about the status of the project.

‘What’s going on?’

“Everywhere I go, whether in church or in public, someone says, ‘What’s going on with that hotel over there?’ I say, ‘Your guess is as good as mine,’” Moorman said in an interview at his office last week.

In a statement, the Trumps’ partner, Chawla Hotels, said construction “should recommence after the holidays” and were expecting the hotel to open in 2018.

Cleveland’s downtown strip is on a street called Cotton Row, named for the crops on nearby farms. The town is home to Delta State University and the recently opened Grammy Museum Mississippi, which showcases musical history and the deep local roots of the blues.

Local officials said they were eager to see the project finished to provide hotel rooms for visitors to these attractions.

“We were looking forward to the doors opening up in 2017,” said Willie Simmons, a Democrat and Mississippi state senator who owns a local soul food restaurant, the Senator’s Place.

SunHerald / New York Times
12/26/17