Neighbors Ask: What Will Become of the Vast Network of Underground Tunnels?
The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society — the Jehovah’s Witnesses — will be offering for sale the large property it owns at 169-171 Columbia Heights, formerly the Standish Arms Hotel, the Brooklyn Eagle has learned.
According to the Eagle's Dennis Holt, the Witnesses use this 12-story building for residential purposes.
The Watchtower has been in the process of reorganizing its operations, transferring many of them to facilities in upstate New York. See here for more.More comments on the Brooklyn Heights Blog.
UPDATE: The Brownstoner blog latched onto this story Thursday and the comments have been pouring in.
Some correspondents focused on the benefits to the area's tax base (once the JWs have left). Others wondered when the religious group would sell the nicely renovated Bossert (on Montague Street). One Brooklyn Heights neighbor notes that no matter what you think of the JW's, they don't seem to add to the parking hassle in the nabe: "... guess it's all their carpooling, their Dumbo parking lot and the 24-hour shuttle buses for church members."
But perhaps the most interesting comments focus on the vast network of tunnels connecting most of their Brooklyn Heights buildings, and what will become of them when their buildings are sold: "... They have built an extensive system of tunnels connecting most of their buildings underground and providing them with a safe haven when Armageddon comes, which was supposed to have been in the 1980's but has been pushed back. They will need to seal the tunnel entrance under the Standish Arms now..."