DUMBO, which stands for “Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass”, is a tiny Brooklyn waterfront neighborhood with remarkable views of Manhattan as well as the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges, and runs from Old Fulton Street in the south to the Brooklyn Navy Yard in the north, from Nassau Street and the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway on the east, to the Brooklyn Bridge on the west. The neighborhood is a cluster of various sized old warehouses and loft buildings that are a mixture of office space, artist workspace, residential condominiums and rentals. In the 1890s, the western portion of the neighborhood was known as Fulton Landing, after the ferry stop that connected it to Manhattan before the Brooklyn Bridge opened. Then, it was primarily a manufacturing district, which included warehouses, and factories that made machinery, paper boxes and Brillo soap pads. The cardboard box was invented in the Robert Gair building on Washington Street, which is now the home to several creative agencies and technology companies. Transportation from Dumbo is by the F train at York Street and the A & C trains at High Street, or by Water Taxi from the Fulton Ferry Landing, making it a swift commute to downtown Manhattan.
With deindustrialization, Dumbo started to become primarily residential, when artists and other young home seekers began looking for relatively large and inexpensive loft apartment spaces for studios and homes in the late 1970s. Just to the north is the neighborhood of Vinegar Hill, which contains charming nineteenth-century houses and Belgian-block streets. This tiny area with a historical name has cobblestone streets and modern luxury condos. To take advantage of Dumbo’s stellar views, the 33-story J Condo, the tallest building in the area, offers an observatory deck as well as a lobby lounge, fitness center and a 24-hour doorman. The historic Eagle Warehouse and Storage Company at 28 Old Fulton Street, a landmark loft co-op building that was once home to the offices of Walt Whitman, offers sprawling layouts, original details and views of downtown Manhattan and the glow of the Brooklyn Bridge. Dumbo rentals like 220 Water Street and 25 Washington Street offer uniquely redesigned interiors, exposed brick, original columns and central air.
Dumbo has emerged as one of New York City's premier arts districts, with art galleries such as the Klompching Gallery, and not-for-profit institutions like St. Ann's Warehouse and the A.I.R. Gallery. Chef Jacques Torres opened a chocolate factory in Dumbo, where visitors can glimpse the factory in action and peruse store shelves filled with chocolate treats. Grimaldi's on Front Street offers exceptional pizza from coal-fired ovens, and a line that typically wraps around the entire block. The Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory on the corner of Old Fulton and Water Streets delivers simple, pure and delicious sundaes, banana splits and milk shakes, produced directly from their two Brooklyn locations in small batches. The River Café is an elegant restaurant nestled under the Brooklyn Bridge, which serves a wonderful classic New American menu using only the finest, freshest and often rare ingredients. Old Fulton Street is home to Juliana’s Pizza and, just around the corner is Ignazzios Pizza. Shake Shack will also be opening on the corner of Old Fulton and Water street in 2014.
Fulton Landing, which has great historical significance as the site of the original ferry between Brooklyn and Manhattan in 1642, is also home to Bargemusic, a floating venue for classical music. Conveniently located at the foot of Fulton Street, this famous small landing juts out onto the water. Brooklyn Bridge Park, a joint state/city venture presently under development, is a world-class waterfront park with lush gardens, river-front promenades, rolling hills, and spectacular city views. The park also includes sand volleyball courts, bicycle and running paths, a boat launch, numerous playgrounds, a picnic area, as well as a dog run and pool.