Relatives of late rap great Big Punisher have resumed efforts to name a Bronx street after the emcee.
Nicole Rodriguez, Big Pun’s sister, wants to change the name of E. 163rd St. and Rogers Place in Longwood to “Big Pun Place,” according to New York’s Daily News—a street corner that is already marked by a mural of the hometown hero.
“I feel I owe this to my brother,” she said. “He was not only my brother, he was a father figure. He stepped in when my parents couldn’t. So I want to push for this. He deserves it.”
Since launching an online campaign at www.bigpunplace.com on Feb. 21, Rodriguez has collected more than 1,200 signatures in support of the measure and is planning a rally on intersection this Saturday at 1 p.m.
“It would become a visual cemetery for everyone,” she told the Daily News. “My brother was cremated, so there’s nowhere to visit him. This way, his legacy will live on close to home.”
Rap partner and Fellow Terror Squad member Triple Seis said the renaming would be an appropriate acknowledgement of Pun’s contributions. “I think he really deserves this, because he made such an impact in the community,” he said.
A prior street naming effort in 2000 was squashed by the city, as Pun’s lyrics were deemed “racy and violent.”
Rodriguez and Gail Tirado, Big Pun’s mother, will state their case to a community board next month.
Big Pun died of a heart attack on Feb. 7, 2000, when he was 28 years old. —Lauren Carter