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The Notorious B.I.G. was a Brooklyn rapper through and through, and he always took pride in where he was from. As he rose to fame in the 1990s, he was able to help himself, his family, and his mother escape some of the difficult conditions they had experienced.

Rapper Notorious B.I.G. AKA Biggie Smalls (Christopher Wallace) performs on October 5, 1995 during the UrbanAid Lifebeat concert
The Notorious B.I.G. | Larry Busacca/Getty Images

The Notorious B.I.G. used to live in Fort Greene, Brooklyn

The Notorious B.I.G. grew up living on the border of Brooklyn’s rough neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant. In the early 1990s, as his career as a rapper slowly begun to get off the ground, Biggie was able to provide a home for himself and his family.

He bought a two-bedroom apartment in 1994 in Brooklyn’s upscale Fort Greene neighborhood in 1994. The three-story building, located at 159 Carlton Avenue, is known as the Feuchtwanger Stable and dates from the late 1800s; it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1986.

Biggie lived in the apartment with his wife, Faith Evans, and her daughter, Chyna Tahjere Griffin. That same year he bought it, he began recording his debut album Ready to Die in his own home.

The Notorious BIG aka Biggie Smalls performing at Meadowlands
The Notorious B.I.G. | David Corio/Redferns

The Notorious B.I.G.’s old apartment underwent renova

Biggie died in 1997 and the apartment was sold to a lucky buyer. In 2011, costume designer Caroline Duncan — who worked on productions including When They See Us and The Affair — bought the property and gut-renovated it from floor to ceiling.

Duncan spoke about the renovation in a 2021 interview with The New York Post. The renovation added a library room with built-in bookshelves and walk-through closets, a new kitchen, and much more.

“When I moved in, the basement was just a raw space with concrete floors,” she said honestly. “I framed and put up all the walls and created a bathroom with barn wood and modern finishes, a massive walk-through closet to showcase my collection of clothing and accessories, a laundry room and bedrooms.” 

“Upstairs had been carved into a series of puzzling small rooms so I did the opposite, and knocked down all the walls to create a lofted open space,” she continued. “I loved the neighborhood, the proximity to Fort Greene Park, the fact that the building is on the Historic Register and had the bones of a true artist’s residence.” 

In 2021, Duncan put the home for sale for a listing price of $1.7 million.

The Notorious BIG (born Christopher Wallace) attends the 1995 Billboard Music Awards, New York, New York
The Notorious B.I.G. | Larry Busacca/WireImage

What Does The Notorious B.I.G. Stand For?

The Notorious B.I.G. grew up in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn

Biggie grew up not far away from his famed adulthood home in Fort Greene. He was raised in an apartment in the neighboring area of Clinton Hill, on the border between Clinton Hill and Bedford-Stuyvesant.

Biggie once described the apartment as a “one-room shack.” Located on St. James Place near busy Fulton Street, the apartment — and block — became synonymous with Biggie after his death.

After he died, the block was renamed Christopher “The Notorious B.I.G.” Wallace Way. The roughly 1,000-square-foot apartment has since been renovated and hit the market as a rental in 2019 for $4,000 a month.