Developers Close on Jehovah’s Witnesses’ HQ Buildings for $340M
Liam La Guerre Aug. 4, 2016, 3:30 p.m.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses has completed the sale of its headquarters, a 739,000-square-foot complex of properties near the Brooklyn waterfront, according to a news release from the buyers.
While the press release didn’t mention a price, a source with knowledge of the deal said the joint venture of Kushner Companies, CIM Group and LIVWRK purchased the buildings in the Brooklyn Heights section of the borough for approximately $340 million. The properties at
25-30 Columbia Heights and 55 Furman Street are set on 2.3 acres of land. The partnership plans to renovate and convert the buildings into an office campus.
“We’re always looking to raise the bar for how today’s top companies want to work, and this property will set a new standard,” Jared Kushner, chief executive officer of Kushner Companies (and the publisher of Commercial Observer), said in prepared remarks. “Over the next year, we’ll begin transforming the property into one of the marquee urban office campuses anywhere in the country, let alone New York City.”
Watch Tower and Tract Society of Pennsylvania, the governing arm of the Witnesses, is also in contract with the partnership to sell a separate 35,000-square-foot site at 85 Jay Street between Front and York Streets for $300 million to $400 million, the source said. That site has 1.1 million square feet of development rights. The Witnesses’ real estate office handled the negotiations of the sale in-house.
The buyers did not have a broker on the deal, according to the source.
Kushner Companies and LIVWRK also partnered with Aby Rosen’s RFR Realty to buy the 1-million-square-foot Dumbo Heights campus in October 2013 for $375 million from the Witnesses. That partnership has spent a more than $100 million gut renovating the properties at 55 Prospect Street, 77 Stands Street, 81 Prospect Street, 175 Pearl Street and 117 Adams Street.