After a long battle to keep a Bronx residence believed to be the birthplace of hip-hop from being sold, New York City officials have announced that the apartment building will go on the market later this week.
According to the New York Times, the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development along with its’ landlord released their decision last Friday (September 26) confirming their intent to allow the building, 1520 Sedgwick, to be put on sale.
The landlord is expected to remove the home from New York’s Mitchell-Lama moderate housing program, which was created with intent of making affordable housing for middle-income residents, by fulfilling the mortgage with a $5 million payment. Afterwards, 1520 Sedgwick will then be placed in to the hands of well-known real estate developer Mark Karasick who has been attempting to purchase the property for over a year.
Despite the current tenants, advocates and the building’s hip-hop pioneer DJ Kool Herc coming together to prepare a $10 million offer for the building and securing a temporary restraining order against the sale, the State Supreme Court ruled in favor of the landlord on Friday.
“While the owners of 1520 Sedgwick have a legal right to buyout of the Mitchell-Lama program, the building’s residents have made an offer that we believe is more than fair,” Shauna Donovan, commissioner for the housing preservation department, told New York Times. “In this light, it is difficult to understand why the owners would choose to put the affordability of over 100 families’ homes at risk.”
As previously reported by SOHH, Herc has put forward an extensive amount of effort in hopes of preventing the sale including calling a news conference earlier this year to bring national attention to the building’s importance.
“This is where it all started,” Herc said at a January press conference. “But its’ turned into a sad story. People are about to be put out of their houses.”
“All the Queen Latifah’s and Will Smith’s,” he added. “We’re asking all those guys you see in Forbes magazine that are living hip-hop to recognize this building.”
The Bronx building reportedly gave birth to hip-hop after Herc threw a now legendary house party there in August 1973.