Sold! Third Of Eight Watchtower Properties In Heights Grabs $3M

The third of eight Brooklyn Heights residential properties on the market by the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society has bid “Amen” to owners Jehovah’s Witnesses. A five-story walk-up apartment building at 161 Columbia Heights sold for $3 million to investment and management firm Sugar Hill Capital Partners.

The listing was managed by Massey Knakal Realty Services, which also sold a Witnesses-owned multi-family building at 50 Orange Street, to the same buyer in January for $7.1 million.

The property at 161 Columbia “has been immaculately maintained since the prior owner purchased the property in 1988,” Knakal told the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. The 6,273-square-foot residential building, which has a cellar level providing an additional 1,240 square feet, contains seven fair-market, one rent-stabilized and two rent-controlled units.

Knakal’s one remaining listing, 183 Columbia Heights—a seven-story apartment building with 13 apartments, asking $7.1 million—is currently under contract and should close within a month, Knakal said. That property attracted 27 offers.

Corcoran Group Brooklyn has the other five listings, one of which sold in February: a carriage house at 165 Columbia Heights for $4.1 million. Agent Ellen Newman is handling those listings with colleague Lisa Detwiler.

Prior to these three sales, the Eagle says that Watchtower owned 34 properties totaling 3.4 million square feet that it intends to dispose of in the Heights and DUMBO: four parking lots, 17 residential buildings and 13 buildings in manufacturing zones, including its world headquarters complex at 25 and 30 Columbia Heights and a tower at 90 Sands St. that is zoned as a hotel.

(Photo: Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

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  • Topham Beauclerk

    And all tax-free to the Witnesses. The god-business is certainly lucrative.

  • http://Questionfortruthlovers. Alex

    So will Jehovah destroy these former Watchtower buildings since they are now in worldly hands?

  • stuart

    wow that building must be full of rent control tenants paying $59.99 a month rent.

  • AEB

    Not, Alex, as long as the tenants tithe their flat-screen TVs….

  • KT

    I will be sad to see the Jehovah’s Witnesses go, they are some the only people who clean the sidewalks in front of their buildings. Look out for even more dog poop.

  • lared

    Is it part of the American persona to be cynical and sarcastic? Do you really feel as though that is always appealing?

  • Andrew Porter

    Stuart, do you understand that rent control is not the same as rent stabilization? To be rent controlled, a resident must have been a tenant prior to 1970 in a building of a certain size and age; there are now less than 50,000 rent controlled apartments in NYC. Also, rents can be raised 7.5% every year. Rent stabilization is a completely different program.