After securing a multi-million dollar state grant, the Universal Hip-Hop Museum is one step closer to construction. New York awarded $3.75 million in funding to help build the 50,000 square-foot Bronx museum, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Thursday (Dec. 19).
The museum is currently operating out of a pop-up installation in the Bronx Terminal Market that opened earlier in the month.
“We knew it was important because the Bronx is where hip-hop started,” Rocky Bucano, executive director the museum’s board, told CNN. “It’s crazy to think of how hip-hop — which has such an influence on pop culture, advertising, politics — doesn’t have a place to call home.”
The $80 million museum is aimed at celebrating and preserving “the history of local and global hip-hop music and culture to inspire, empower, and promote understanding.” Additional board members include Ice-T, and StepSun Music CEO, Bill Stephney.
Bucano is the museum’s founding member, along with hip-hop legend Kurtis Blow, producer Shawn LG Thomas, hip-hop DJ pioneer Grandwizzard Theodore, rap manager Mickey Bentson, and Joe Conzo Jr., photographer for the Cold Crush Brothers.
LL Cool J, Q Tip, Nas, Big Daddy Kane, Rakim, and Fab Five Freddie are on the long list of UHHM’s cultural ambassadors.
The museum is scheduled to open in 2023.