1520 Sedgwick Avenue

Category: Renovation | Year: 2013
| Place: New York City

1520 Sedgwick Avenue in the Bronx was not your average building purchased by a speculative real estate investor in the housing crisis aftermath. It’s known as the birthplace of hip hop, for the parties thrown in its rec room by DJ Kool Herc starting in 1973.

But when speculators descended, it was also in very real danger of becoming another example of long-time affordable housing in an improving area lost. Shelterforce wrote about that struggle in 2011.

Happily, the plan the tenants were holding their breath about when we last covered the fight came through. Affordable housing developer Workforce Housing Associates was able to foreclose on the predatory equity owner and assemble the financing to completely rehab the neglected building while keeping it affordable to tenants at 60-70 percent of area median income.

The New York Times’ in-depth story shows the terrible state of 1520 Sedgwick Avenue before the building was rehabilitated. 

NY1’s story profiled the residents’ improved quality of life after our renovation.