Battle For "Hip Hop's Birthplace" Ends With Sale

A legal loophole could mean the end of the building at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue

In an effort to curb local gentrification, and save what is widely regarded as "the birthplace of Hip Hop," residents of the 100-unit building located at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue made plans to buy their building. Those efforts ended when the building's current owners made moves to pay the unit's remaining mortgage and have it removed from a special affordable housing program.

The building's current owners were blocked from selling the property month's ago, when New York's Department of Housing Preservation and Development rejected the proposed $9 million sale. That sale was $1.5 million higher than the building's assessed value, and would have likely removed the building from the Mitchell-Lama affordable housing program. In order to avoid having another sale blocked by the state, the current owners elected to pay the remaining balance off. Such a move will end any regulatory power the state has over the sale or use of the property.

"They have requested a payoff letter for early September,


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