BERLIN (AP) — Berlin’s city government says it is buying some 14,750 apartments from two large corporate landlords for 2.46 billion euros ($2.9 billion). The deal announced Friday comes a week before local and national elections. The deal with Vonovia and Deutsche Wohnen, which also includes about 450 shops and follows months of negotiations, involves both companies selling about 10% of their property in Berlin. Rising rents have been a hot-button issue for years in Berlin. Purchases of apartments that were once government-owned but over recent decades were sold off to private companies are one way in which the outgoing state government has sought to address the problem.