May 25, 2024

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Essex Crossing Rental Complex Named After Jazz Legend Sonny Rollins

Jazz saxophonist Sonny Rollins once lived in a walkup tenement at 400 Grand Street. That history was decimated two years ago when Essex Crossing muscled into the neighborhood.

Now the mega-development is honoring the musician by naming the new fifteen-story tower at Site 5 in his honor. Here comes The Rollins, offering wallet-busting luxury rentals. One thing is for sure – struggling musicians and creatives are not particularly welcome. Check out the rental stats.

The building itself (145 Clinton Street) sports 107 market-rate apartments, which start at $3,150 per month for a studio; larger apartments will start at $4,550 per month (for a one-bedroom), $5,800 per month (two-bedroom), and a whopping $8,450 per month for a three-bedroom. As the New York Times is quick to point out, these are some of the highest rents in the Lower East Side.

There are also 104 affordable apartments for the taking at $519 per month. But you may have better luck winning Powerball than scoring an apartment here. More than 93,000 applications were submitted for the housing lottery earlier this year.

Rollins, for his part, told the Times that he’s “overwhelmed” by the honor (i.e. authentrification). In his younger days, while living at 400 Grand Street, the horn player would seek refuge on the pedestrian path of the Williamsburg Bridge, as “I had no place to practice…my neighbor on Grand Street was the drummer Frankie Dunlop, and his wife was pregnant,” he wrote two years ago. “Nobody was there, and it was beautiful. I went to the bridge to practice just about every day for two years. Playing against the sky really does improve your volume, and your wind capacity.”

The honor is unrelated to the simultaneous push to rename the Williamsburg Bridge after Rollins. That push gained significant momentum with the endorsement of Councilmember Stephen Levin in October.

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