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NEW YORK CITY-The owner of Cobble Hill Towers, a nine-building rental apartment portfolio at 419-35, 445 Hicks St. in the Cobble Hill section of Brooklyn, has entered into a joint venture with an equity partner in a transaction valued at $34 million. Hudson Cos. will take over operations of the complex, with the eventual goal of converting the properties to private ownership, says Massey Knakal Realty Services’ Kenneth Freeman in a release.

Freeman, senior director sales at Massey Knakal, tells GlobeSt.com the time frame for the conversion to for-sale housing is two to three years, “depending on the market.” Although securing a JV partner was the goal of owner Frank Farella, Freeman says it isn’t typical.

“I can’t say I’m seeing more joint ventures,” Freeman says. “Partnering with a stranger is a difficult way to conduct business, and although I think there are more owners/developers who would like a JV partner to enter their projects now because of tough times, the guys with cash are picking their spots very carefully.”

The 140,778-square-foot, landmarked apartment complex–located on Hicks Street–spans over two blocks between Kane and Warren Streets. The complex consists of nine six-story adjacent walkup apartment buildings with 188 units. Two of them are free market while the remaining 186 units are rent-stabilized.

Built in 1876 by Alfred T. White, the complex overlooking the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway is considered one of the first examples of ‘socially engineered’ modern working-class housing in America. The restoration project in the 1970s, which cost $5 million, is reportedly the largest project developed under New York City’s neighborhood preservation program. Massey Knakal was the sole broker in the transaction

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