Downtown, Brooklyn, New York City
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Downtown Brooklyn is the third largest central business district in New York City (following Midtown Manhattan and Lower Manhattan), and is located in the northwestern section of the borough of Brooklyn. The neighborhood's numerous office buildings including the Williamsburgh Savings Bank Tower and 4 MetroTech Center give the area its own skyline distinct from Manhattan's.
The area gets its name from having once been the downtown section of the City of Brooklyn, which was an independent city before the consolidation of the five boroughs of New York City in 1898. Today, the area is a newly rezoned and growing commercial district, and it includes MetroTech Center, Brooklyn Borough Hall, the Kings County New York State courthouse, and the central courthouse for the Federal Eastern District of New York. Prominent schools include St. Francis College, Brooklyn Law School, Polytechnic University, New York City College of Technology, and Long Island University. There are numerous attractions within the area, including the Fulton Mall, Brooklyn Academy of Music and the New York Transit Museum. The Borough Hall Greenmarket, featuring fresh produce from local farmers, operates on the plaza fronting Borough Hall three days a week. Cadman Plaza Park provides 10 acres of green space in the neighborhood, and was recently renovated by the New York City Parks Department.
It is connected with Manhattan by the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges. The neighborhood has extensive public transportation accessibility; it is served by the New York City Subway by the 2, 3, 4, 5, A, C, F, G, B, D, M, N, Q, and R lines, many one stop from Manhattan. The Long Island Rail Road stops at the Atlantic Terminal, located at the intersection of Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues.
Historically there has not been a great deal of housing in Downtown Brooklyn. Housing which does exist includes a few apartment buildings on Livingston Street, and seven 15-story buildings that make up the over 1,000 unit Concord Village co-op development on Adams Street, at the borders of both Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO. Since 2003, the area has attracted significant new residential development. This includes a new Brooklyn Law School dorm at Boerum Place and State Street, the condo conversion of 110 Livingston Street, a new apartment building at Atlantic and Court Streets, newly constructed luxury residential condominiums at Court and State and on State between Court and Boerum Place. A New York Times article in April 2007 stated that new 7,000 units were in planning or construction in the area.
The New York City Department of City Planning has approved a significant rezoning for portions of Downtown Brooklyn, including the Fulton Mall area, which may result in significant expansion of office space and ground-floor retail. The rezoning consists of "zoning map and zoning text changes, new public open spaces, pedestrian and transit improvements, urban renewal, [and] street mappings". The City Planning initiative also seeks to improve the connections between Downtown and the adjacent neighborhoods of Cobble Hill, Boerum Hill, and Fort Greene. There are also plans to build an arena in the nearby Prospect Heights district and relocate the New Jersey Nets (an NBA professional basketball team) there.
In July 2007 plans were announced to open a branch of Trader Joe's at the northeast corner of Atlantic Avenue and Court Street.
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