Real Estate Weekly
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90 Sands Street sale closes for $170M, former hotel to house homeless

RFR Realty has closed its sale of 90 Sands Street in Dumbo to a low-income housing developer for $170 million, according to city records.

After purchasing the building from the Jehovah’s Witnesses last year for $135 million with the intent of renovated the 600-key hotel, RFR dealt the property to Breaking Ground, a not-for-profit organization focused on creating and maintaining affordable housing.

The sale was widely reported on earlier this summer. Christian Bautista of The Real Deal was the first to report on the sales closing, which was recorded on August 31, according to the city’s Department of Finance.

Standing 30 stories tall and made of brick, 90 Sands stands between the entrance ramps to both the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges. It also shares a skybridge with a retail and office complex that includes Etsy, software companies and WeWork Dumbo Heights.

Breaking Ground used a $157 million mortgage from the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s Supportive Housing Loan Program as well as a $10 million sponsor loan from its own housing development fund.

Founded in 1990, Breaking Ground opened its first supportive housing center at the 652-unit Times Square Hotel in 1992 and now operates 3,500 units throughout the city, with roughly 1,000 more in the work, according to its website.

Led by president and CEO Brenda Rosen, the organization is funded by donations, many of which are from corporate and institutional investors in the fields of real estate and finance.

With properties in New York City, Stamford, Connecticut and Seattle, RFR Realty invests in office, residential, retail and hospitality assets.

Neither company returned calls seeking comment on Tuesday afternoon.

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