Clive Campbell, known as D.J. Kool Herc, at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue in the west Bronx. (yler Hicks/The New York Times)


The Sedgwick building is part of the state’s Mitchell-Lama program, in which private landlords who receive tax breaks and subsidized mortgages agree to limit their return on equity and rent to people who meet modest income limits. The contracts allow owners to leave the program and prepay their mortgage loan after 20 years. Rent regulations can protect tenants from increases, but not always.

“That place means everything,” he said. “You can look at it objectively and say it could have happened somewhere else. Maybe. But this is where it did happen.”

To him it is already a landmark.

“As far as government and what they consider important, who knows?” he said. “But for something that saturated the world culture, that went from one building to the world, I would want to hold on to the historical significance of that building.”