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Get to know Downtown Brooklyn

Brooklyn has a skyline too. It’s a beacon signaling the location of Downtown Brooklyn, a civic and commercial center that has endured since before the famed borough was ever a borough. Downtown Brooklyn is best-known these days as the site of courthouses, municipal buildings, and the like (the imposing Greek Revival-style Borough Hall standing as the most notable). Over time, though, a residential flavor has emerged. Vintage rowhouses are met by condominiums and skyscrapers — each subsequent one taking Brooklyn to literal new heights as the borough’s tallest building. The area’s rise in stature mirrors neighboring Brooklyn Heights, its 19th-century population boom owed to Robert Fulton’s invention of the steam ferry. People rode across the East River from Manhattan and never looked back — except to enjoy scenic vistas from the nearby waterfront or a perch up on high.

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Downtown Brooklyn Commerce & Culture

Like the downtown district across the river, Downtown Brooklyn is a hub for transportation where all the subway lines meet before dispersing across the borough. It’s fitting then the neighborhood is home to the New York Transit Museum, a celebration of NYC’s immensely detailed transportation history. Numerous other cultural institutions are within a short distance, including the Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, and the Barclays Center. Despite its unabashed metropolitan atmosphere, Downtown Brooklyn is not without its natural tranquility; Cadman Plaza, Walt Whitman, and a network of other parks provide some needed green relief on its western edge. Top-notch cuisine — including a massive food hall — and retail within its borders, plus a treasure trove of options in adjacent neighborhoods and the revitalized Brooklyn Navy Yard, make Downtown Brooklyn appointment eating and shopping for anyone looking to munch or spend their way across King’s County.