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5.0 out of 10

Centre St, Civic Center

40.7132664321693 -74.0039425872131
Great for
  • Parks & Recreation
  • Clean & Green
  • Peace & Quiet
  • Public Transport
Not great for
  • Eating Out
  • Nightlife
  • Parking
  • Shopping Options
  • Gym & Fitness
Who lives here?
  • Tourists


3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 1/5
  • Public Transport 3/5

"Government and Green"

Centre streets run through Civic Center starts just below Foley Square in Thomas Paine park. The square is actually pretty cool if you can ignore all of the surrounding noise. It was named for a Tammany Hall big wig whose saloon was located right in the square. Directly across the street, Thurgood Marshall Courthouse dominates the block. We have a lot of courthouses in this area, but I believe this is the one that most people go to (or at least, this is the one I had to go to when I had a jury summons). It's a pretty building but it doesn't really stand up to the courthouses in the neighborhood, aesthetically. And, it's kind of depressing on because of all the shabbily dressed government appointed attorneys and their clients.
A little further down Centre, and you run into the Surrogate Courthouse which is the most beautiful courthouse I think I have ever seen. It's stunning. The exterior is gothic feeling with a ton of statues lining it and the interior was designed after the Paris Opera House so it's very opulent but very pretty. I feel like if I have to go to court again, can't I get summonsed to this one? Across from the courthouse is the Muncipal Building which is also very pretty and neo-gothic. It has a very large tower that makes it easy to spot. . . not that it's hard to . . it holds a million square feet of space. Most of the mayoral offices are in this building.
City Hall Park is just down from the Surrogate Courthouse. It has always been a park, even before New York was New York. And, it's a pretty big space where a lot of riots like the Draft Riots, Slavery Riots, Revolutionary riots have been started or ended. . . or both. And, yet another green space is just a bit further down at Printing House Square which ends the street. The square has a big Ben Franklin statue so it's hard to miss but the real history is that this square was the site of the execution of a British militia leader whom refused to step down from his post when New York was part of the colonies. He was hanged, burned and disemboweled not far from where the statue is now. It's always in the most peaceful looking places, that the most violence happens in this city it seems.
There are a lot of green spaces here and a lot of beautiful buildings, but unfortunately, not a whole lot of living areas. It's largely for government offices which also makes the energy and feel of the neighborhood such that you wouldn't really want to live on Centre even if you could find a place. There's just nothing to do outside of a visit or work.
  • Gorgeous buildings
  • Lots of green
  • No neighborhood feel
  • Not really residential
  • No bar or restaurant scene
Recommended for
  • Tourists

Unranked Streets in Civic Center

Centre St

"Government and Green"
40.7132664321693 -74.0039425872131

Chambers St

"Beautiful, old governmental buildings"
40.7139235146904 -74.0057844957718

Cliff St

"Great Place to Eat and Shop"
40.7085640007229 -74.0043790009875

Elk St

"convenient parking for downtown and government workers"
40.7140243787177 -74.0044137050359

Foley Sq

"At Foley Square"
40.7139087503654 -74.0031028050884

Gold St

40.7098598779564 -74.0046018257387

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