- READER REVIEWS
Brooklyn Borough Hall
Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm; Sat-Sun, closed
Nearby Subway Stops
2, 3, 4, 5 at Borough Hall; A, C, F, R at Jay St.-MetroTech; R at Court St.
- Nearby Parking Lots
- Street Parking
Thanks to a 1989 restoration of the building's exterior, Brooklyn Borough Hall looks even better than it did when it opened in 1848 as the then-city of Brooklyn's City Hall. One of New York's finest Greek Revival structures—and Brooklyn's oldest public building—it now houses the borough president's administrative offices and serves as a public space and backdrop for press conferences and film shoots. Outside, a triangular pediment of white Tuckahoe marble steps sits under six grand columns and a handsome Ionic portico. Inside, just past the first-floor tourist center, a two-story rotunda envelops visitors with more marble columns, gray-and-white floor tiling (changed from black-and-white because it looked like a bathroom), and pink marble walls. There are also plenty of remnants of the building’s previous functions as a court and jail: defunct holding cells, caucus rooms, and most impressively, a magnificent courtroom that’s now used as an event space and a set on shows like Law & Order. Rebuilt after an 1895 fire, its florid Beaux Arts design—with ornate columns, damask walls, and Scalamandre curtains—contrasts the stately style elsewhere.Tours
Free guided tours are offered on Tuesdays at 1 p.m.