Fulton Street, named after Robert Fulton, is a long east–west street in northern Brooklyn, New York City. A street of the same name in Manhattan was linked to this street by Fulton with his steam ferries.
This street begins at the intersection of Adams Street and Joralemon Street in Brooklyn Heights. For a hundred years before the Fulton Ferry monopoly, Fulton Street was the Ferry Road through Jamaica Pass and, in the centuries before any ferry service, Indian path to the Hempstead Plains. It began at the Fulton Ferry Landing and climbed south through Brooklyn Heights past City Hall to where it now begins at Adams Street. Part of the original Fulton Street survives as Old Fulton Street in Brooklyn Heights/DUMBO and Cadman Plaza West. The segment of Fulton Street that traveled past Borough Hall has been turned into a pedestrian esplanade.
The initial segment of Fulton Street as it exists today is the Fulton Mall between Adams Street and Flatbush Avenue. The mall is an outdoor commercial center that primarily caters to African American clientele. East of Flatbush Avenue, Fulton Street becomes a major artery of Downtown Brooklyn, Fort Greene and Clinton Hill. At Franklin Avenue, Fulton Street then becomes the signature street of Bedford–Stuyvesant. At Broadway Junction in East New York, the street is interrupted by the intersection of Broadway and Jamaica Avenue, but continues on the other side as a one-way residential street through East New York and Cypress Hills until Norwood Avenue, once again as a two-way street reaching the Queens border at Elderts Lane in Woodhaven, Queens. There it becomes 91st Avenue, which continues until 84th Street in Queens.
The elevated BMT Fulton Street Line used to run over Fulton Street. The New York City Subway's IND Fulton Street subway line (A C trains) has replaced it east of Washington Avenue. The BMT Jamaica Line (J Z trains) runs above Fulton Street between Broadway Junction and Crescent Street.
On March 10, 2005, Fulton Street was co-named Harriet Ross Tubman Avenue along most of its length from Rockaway Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant to Elm Place in Downtown Brooklyn, on the anniversary of the death of the ex-slave and abolitionist, which has been designated "Harriet Tubman Day of Commemoration" in New York State.
Fulton Mall is a pedestrian street and transit mall in Downtown Brooklyn that runs on Fulton Street between Flatbush Avenue and Adams Street. Fulton Mall is home to over 230 stores and includes major retailers such as Macy's – which was originally Abraham & Straus's flagship store – H&M, Gap, GameStop, RadioShack, Payless ShoeSource, Foot Locker, Modell's Sporting Goods, and Finish Line. The Fulton Mall Improvement Association is the local business improvement district. Fulton Mall contains dedicated bus lanes; for the mall's length, only buses, commercial vehicles, local truck deliveries, and emergency vehicles are allowed to use the street. (The only other busways are for the Select Bus Service.)
Architect Lee Harris Pomeroy redesigned the mall in the early 1980s: he designed street furniture and equipment for the project including large, free-standing canopies, vendors’ kiosks, directory and telephone kiosks; and high mast lighting.
The graphics program, which he also designed for the project, consists of informational, directional and street signage. The Mall had been in operation since the 1970s, but Pomeroy's renovation was completed in 1984; the project was awarded an Albert S. Bard Award from the City Club of New York.
Numerous subway services (the A C F N R trains at Jay Street – MetroTech; the B D N Q R trains at DeKalb Avenue; the A C G trains at Hoyt–Schermerhorn Streets; and the 2 3 4 5 trains at Nevins Street and Hoyt Street) and bus lines service the Fulton Mall area. The Fulton Mall area is New York City's third largest commercial center and is one of New York City's densest transit hubs, second only to Times Square. The mall has attracted major investments from prominent Brooklyn retail real estate developers such as Stanley Chera.
The Fulton Street Mall is mentioned in the song "An Open Letter to NYC" by the Beastie Boys.