LL Cool J, Fat Joe among artists to break ground on future Universal Hip-Hop Museum in South Bronx
Hip-hop legends from across the five boroughs came together in the South Bronx Thursday to celebrate the groundbreaking for the Universal Hip-Hop Museum.
Iconic rappers and New York natives like Fat Joe, LL Cool J and Nas joined Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. to celebrate.
"You know, it just shows you that we can take something that people thought was nothing and turn it into something really special that's meaningful," LL Cool J said.
Mayor Bill de Blasio and other local officials attended as well to show their support.
The project will not only bring a museum to the area as the massive almost three-acre lot at Exterior Street and East 149th Street will also be home to over 500 Bronx families in a mixed-use housing and entertainment development called Bronx Point.
The $349 million project is meant to honor the birthplace of hip-hop as well as provide permanent affordable housing.
"To have the museum right here in the South Bronx is so important because it will drive economic activity, it will drive just a sense of belonging to the people because this is where it started," said Universal Hip-Hop Museum director Rocky Bucano.
Diaz said the project is 10 years in the making.
The first phase is expected to be completed in late 2023.
The New York City Economic Development Corporation also contributed to the project.
In a statement to News 12, NYCEDC President and CEO Rachel Loeb said, “Today marks a major step towards advancing the administration’s key investments in the South Bronx,” said Rachel Loeb, president and CEO of New York City Economic Development Corporation. “By bringing affordable housing, waterfront access and a range of cultural facilities including the City’s first Hop Hop Museum, we are creating a more equitable New York. We are proud to break ground on the BronxPoint to bring these much-needed community benefits to the South Bronx.”