Chairman Mao had Tiananmen Square. Louis XVI had Versailles. Now, Realtors will have Realtor Plaza.

NAR’s latest stunt is a monument to their own high-handed hubris: they recently approved a 93-story, two million square foot redevelopment of their Chicago headquarters, according to Inman News. Groundbreaking is slated for late 2015 as architects draw up plans inspired by Rockefeller Center. The cost?  A paltry one billion dollars.

Although the project is still in its infancy, NAR’s board currently favors a design that prominently features the Realtor ‘R’ near the entrance. NAR’s Treasurer Bill Armstrong shared his opinion:

Branding is paramount…That is something that we cannot relinquish. To position Realtors for generations to come with this asset, that is incredible.

Incredible indeed.

This one billion dollar development comes on the heels of a $40 dues hike and an announcement that NAR is no longer waiving dues for rank-and-file Realtors with 40+ years of loyalty to the NAR brand.

Perhaps most irksome for real estate agents and brokers is NAR’s delusional and unapologetic self-promotion in the midst of a still-troubled real estate market. While the trade association spouts unfounded optimism and drafts plans for an opulent billion-dollar compound, the homeownership rate continues its collapse.

NAR is committing the classic blunder of all over-bloated, obsolete institutions with too much money and power. They are mistaking image for substance, selling a brand rather than a valuable service. Never before has the Realtor leadership been this out of touch with the interests of its membership.

Are you fed up with NAR yet? Already retire your ‘R’? Let us know what you think in the comments section.