Clinton Hill Street Corner May Soon Be Named In Honor Of Biggie Smalls

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[UPDATED: Monday, October 22 at 6:15pm] As Brooklyn Community Board 2 District Manager Robert Perris noted in the comments, the CB2 board “did not take a position on the proposed co-naming in 2013” nor did it take action after Council Member Cumbo penned a letter of support in September.

The CB2 General Board Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, November 14 at 6pm at the Ingersoll Community Center gym.

CLINTON HILL – Last Thursday, the Brooklyn Community Board 2 Transportation & Public Safety Committee approved a second proposal to rename the corner of Fulton Street and St. James Place “Christopher Wallace Way” to honor the late rapper Biggie Smalls.

Attendees at “Christopher ‘Biggie’ Wallace Courts” ceremony pose with a sign for Christopher Wallace Way, August 2017 (Photo: Paul Stremple/BKLYNER)
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In 2013, Brooklyn-based artist LeRoy McCarthy first presented the community board with letters from local churches, businesses, and community organizations, as well as comments from around the world culled from an online petition supporting the street co-naming, DNA Info reported. At that time, board members opposed the idea, citing Biggie’s criminal past, misogynist lyrics, and even his large build, as reasons to reject McCarthy’s proposal.

Considered one of the most influential rappers of all time, Christopher Wallace, who performed as The Notorious B.I.G., grew up in Clinton Hill. He was killed in 1997 at age 24 in a drive-by shooting.

Over the years, murals have been created honoring the rap star, including one at 991 Fulton Street outside the Key Food where Wallace worked as a teen (when it was a Met Food supermarket). To commemorate the 20th anniversary of Biggie’s death in 2017, the Fulton Street Key Food released limited edition shopping bags featuring an image of the rapper. That summer, the renovated basketball courts at Clinton Hill’s Crispus Attucks Playground were christened the “Christopher ‘Biggie’ Wallace Courts.” The Dream BIG Youth Basketball Tournament, which honors the rapper, takes place at the courts every August.

In September, City Council Member Laurie Cumbo (District 35) wrote a letter to CB2 expressing her support for McCarthy’s co-naming proposal, stressing Biggie’s “artistic legacy and his continued influence in the community,” BK Reader reported.

The full community board will vote on the proposal at the next CB2 General Meeting scheduled for Wednesday, November 14 at 6pm. The meeting location has not been determined yet.

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  1. Community Board 2 (CB2) did not take a position on the proposed co-naming in 2013. It took no action pending Mr. McCarthy obtaining a letter of support from Council Member Laurie Cumbo. The November general meeting of CB2 will be held in the gymnasium at the Ingersoll Community Center.

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