The quest to have a Lower East Side corner co-named after the Beastie Boys isn’t looking like a “sure shot.”
Last night, Community Board 3’s Transportation and Public Safety Committee voted that Brooklyn resident LeRoy McCarthy needed to show more evidence from local residents and businesses that the hip-hop legends had a compelling “link” to the community and had made a “substantial” contribution to the LES.
McCarthy said he had garnered some 1,445 online signatures. But towards the end of an intense hour-and-a-half-long hearing, he agreed to withdraw his application and return to the committee in a month or two with more signatures from all sides of the intersection. He said the area had nurtured not just the Beastie boys but had become a community that symbolized a “whole underground New York subculture.”
“If you love the Beastie Boys, then crush it for them,” said committee member Chad Marlow before the vote was taken. “Make us have no doubts.” Earlier, Marlow advised McCarthy to “knock our socks off” with a new application.
Eight members voted to support the resolution for McCarthy to return with a new application. Committee chairman David Crane had abstained after raising a number of questions as to whether the fame of the Beastie Boys and an “album cover” fell under CB3 guidelines for street co-naming to honor individuals and groups. He acknowledged it was not a “traditional application” and noted it had to be approved by the City Council as well as the full board of CB3.
One of the provisions of the Board guidelines requires that prospective honorees should have a “minimum of 15 years community involvement … and should have demonstrated an extraordinary and consistent voluntary commitment and dedication to the community.” There are exceptions for prospective honorees whose accomplishments fall within CB3.
No one in the audience opposed McCarthy’s app, but only few people arrived to voice their support, among them Rivington Street resident Shannon Saks who said she had hung out with the Beastie Boys, who once lived in Chinatown. She claimed, “I’d have a big hole in my heart without the people I met through them. They deserve this honor for themselves and for Adam,” she said, referring to Adam Yauch, who died in 2012 of cancer at 47. Only two members survive and McCarthy pronounced the group itself “dead.”
Correction: The original version of this post was revised to correct an error. It misstated that Shannon Saks hung out with the Beasties when they lived in Chinatown.