Brooklyn Boro

Potential buyers abuzz about properties the Jehovah’s Witnesses are selling

Eye On Real Estate

December 30, 2015 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
This is the Watchtower's Brooklyn Heights headquarters, which is for sale. Eagle photo by Lore Croghan
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Hallelujah, brother!

The Jehovah’s Witnesses are seeing strong interest in their famed, for-sale headquarters at 25-30 Columbia Heights and two other properties in Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO.

“We have received numerous inquiries from qualified buyers,” Watchtower spokesman Richard Devine told the Brooklyn Eagle via email.

“The iconic nature of these properties and their location are generating a lot of interest. Really, the sale represents an exciting opportunity for the whole community,” he said.

The other properties the Witnesses put onto the sale market in December are residential building 124 Columbia Heights, which overlooks the Promenade, and DUMBO parking lot 85 Jay St., which has nearly 1 million square feet of development rights.

The Watchtower is in the midst of a years-long process of selling its Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO real estate holdings to prepare for the relocation of its world headquarters to upstate Warwick. The move is expected to start in fall 2016 and wrap up in 2017.

At this moment, about 1,900 staff members are located in the Watchtower’s current Brooklyn headquarters facilities, Devine said.

Most of the staffers involved in the Witnesses’ world headquarters operations will go to Warwick, which will accommodate as many as 1,000 people, Devine said.

Also, the Witnesses have recently expanded a facility in upstate Walkill, “which will accommodate additional staff members from Brooklyn,” Devine added.

A dozen Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO properties not yet put up for sale — see related stories — “will eventually be sold,” Devine said. “However, we are not committed to an exact time frame.”

More of the Watchtower properties will go onto the market as Watchtower relocations move forward.

“Each of these properties will have their own special appeal based on the opportunities that they will offer to both potential developers and the community itself,” Devine said.

“We have taken excellent care of our facilities in Brooklyn during the many decades that we have occupied them. We hope that the new owners will do the same.”

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