Ready for business: Ft. Greene’s redesigned Fowler Square opens after years of planning, construction

Have a seat!: Locals enjoy the newly opened Fowler Square in Fort Greene.
Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

This plaza was worth the wait!

Locals packed the newly built Fowler Square plaza in Fort Greene days after it opened last week, celebrating the end of a nearly 10-year project to transform an old, forgotten sliver of green space into a comfortable pedestrian refuge.

“It used to be kind of a wreck. Cars used to drive here, it was kind of a mishmash,” said Jon Eagan. “But now I can get food from any of the nearby restaurants, and plop down here and eat.”

The Department of Design and Construction wrapped up the project in late May, after breaking ground on the new triangular square bounded by Fulton Street, Lafayette Avenue, and S. Elliott Place in March 2017 — seven years after Fort Greene’s commerce-boosting group the Fulton Area Business Alliance received the local community board’s support for the plan in 2010.

The upgraded plaza now boasts a larger seating area with six new benches, 25 tables, and 75 chairs, along with a water fountain, seven newly planted trees, more light poles, and three additional crossing signals to help locals safely exit and enter the plaza from Fulton and Lafayette streets, according to officials. The city shuttered the stretch of S. Elliott Place bordering the plaza to traffic ahead of the redesign.

And the square’s namesake attraction — a statue of Brooklynite and Union Army General Edward Fowler, which stood there before the makeover — moved 24 feet in the process, so that it now sits in the center of the plaza, according to a Design and Construction Department rep.

Late last year, some shopkeepers with businesses near Fowler Square lamented the slow-going project, blasting its delayed debut as another source of congestion on Fulton Street, where the city in November green-lit a plan to install dedicated bus lanes through Fort Greene and Clinton Hill that also drew the merchants’ ire.

But the $2-million transformation was worth the time and frustration, according to the Fulton Area Business Alliance’s chief, who said the makeover resulted in an inviting space and the installation of new infrastructure such as pipes and drains that will reduce flooding that would otherwise damage area storefronts.

“It took six-to-eight months longer than expected [after breaking ground] — when you think about major capital projects, that’s not much,” said Phillip Kellogg. “It’s open, it’s beautiful, and the public is enjoying it. We’re thrilled.” — with Bobby Kirschenbaum

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.
Updated 5:43 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

Tyler from pps says:
So, can we finally stop listening to these whining shop owners who don't even know their customers don't drive?
June 5, 2018, 9:05 am
anonymous from Prospect Heights says:
This project has been a long time coming. When we remember that cities are for people, we improve quality of life and economic development. Looking forward to hanging out there on nice days this summer!
June 5, 2018, 11:18 am
AMH says:
This space is hardly "shuttered"--where cars don't drive, people thrive!
June 5, 2018, 1:10 pm
Son of Baron from Crown Heights says:
Just another place for clueless white folk from the Midwest to sit and drink lattes while breathing the air of white supremacy.
June 5, 2018, 9:36 pm
Adamben from Bedstuy says:
SoB, yes looks like white people sipping lattes in the first pic. Please go back to Kansas. Smh
June 6, 2018, 1:10 pm

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: