Kool Herc Calls on Rappers to Help Save 1520 Sedgwick
At a press conference in the Bronx on Tuesday (January 15), the legendary DJ Kool Herc called on the rappers of today to reach into their pocketbooks to help the residents of a cultural landmark. As previously reported, the tenants of 1520 Sedgwick have been fighting a battle to keep rents in the building affordable after the property’s owner announced that the property would be put it up for sale last year. Last July, the building was designated as being eligible for listing on the State and National Register of Historic Places, however the threat of new ownership and higher rents still loomed. At the end of last year, the owner and prospective buyer agreed to step away from the deal and allow the residents to purchase the building. While various city agencies and private investors have pledged millions to help subsidize the purchase, the tenants are still about $2.5 million short of the $14 million asking price. Standing in the building’s famous community room, flanked by Senator Chuck Schumer and “The First MC Ever” Coke LaRock, Herc implored “all the Queen Latifahs and Will Smiths” to contribute to the cause. “We’re asking all those guys you see in Forbes magazine that are living hip hop to recognize this building,” he told the New York Daily News. If the deal can be finalized, residents intend to turn the building into a limited equity affordable co-op.