National Resources Acquires Leake & Watts Campus for Nearly $53 Million
Real Estate In-Depth | January 6, 2023
YONKERS—Greenwich, CT-based National Resources has acquired the 28-acre Leake & Watts campus in Yonkers and the Bronx from Rising Ground for $52.6 million.
The deal was announced by commercial brokerage firm OPEN Impact Real Estate. OPEN Impact Real Estate is a woman-owned brokerage firm that is an affiliate of Transwestern Real Estate Services. The OPEN Impact team of Lindsay Ornstein, Stephen Powers, Arthur Skelskie and Alexander Smith brokered the transaction on behalf of the seller Rising Ground.
The Leake & Watts campus includes 25 buildings, with 265,000 square feet of space and recreational facilities, including an outdoor pool, indoor pool, baseball field and an indoor basketball court.
Rising Ground will retain a three-acre parcel of the property for various programs. New York City-based Rising Ground supports more than 25,000 children, adults, and families in need each year.
In August 2022, the City of Yonkers and the Yonkers Board of Education announced the Board of Education’s approval to sign a 20-year lease with iPark Riverdale, LLC., to rent the Frank T. Biondi and the Ames School buildings at the former Rising Ground property on Hawthorne Street. In partnership with Great Point Studios, owner and operator of the new Lionsgate Studio Yonkers, the 100,000 square foot property will be the future home to Yonkers Public Schools’ new media and production magnet school. The Yonkers Board of Education approved a $2.4-million annual rent agreement at its meeting on Aug. 17.
National Resources is the developer/owner of iPark properties throughout the Hudson Valley, including iPark Yonkers, where Great Point Studios and Lionsgate Studio Yonkers operate motion picture and television production studios.
“Approaching the sale wholistically, we strategically structured the transaction to provide the financial and timing certainty necessary to implement the relocation of Rising Ground’s programs in a seamless manner while reducing risk to the nonprofit,” said Powers, Co-Founder of OPEN, a leading expert in nonprofit real estate. “We are thrilled to support the strategic vision of this important nonprofit institution through the sale of this real estate holding, positively impacting their programs across the city and region.”
In February 2021, Rising Ground announced it was putting the 32-acre Leake & Watts property on the market for sale. According to a report in Real Estate In-Depth, Rising Ground was seeking a sale price “north of $60 million.” It should be noted that National Resources acquired 28 of the 32-acre property.
Rising Ground had owned the property on the Hudson River shoreline for more than 130 years.