Fulton Street now open to traffic in Downtown Fresno

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The two-block stretch between Tuolumne and Fresno Streets is just the first of three phases of the $20 million project to restore automobile traffic to the Fulton Mall. (KFSN)

You can now drive on Fulton Street in Downtown Fresno.

The two-block stretch between Tuolumne and Fresno Streets is just the first of three phases of the $20 million project to restore automobile traffic to the Fulton Mall.

"It is great to see people use it to its fullest extent and to see all of the new things that are happening and traffic today, just one day into the opening. It really is exciting to see how many more people are coming out to see it," engineer Randall Morrison said.

While the pavement, street lights, and signs are all new drivers and pedestrians will notice some familiar features that were once a part of the Fulton Mall.

Several water fountains and art sculptures were restored and cleaned for the project. And that caught the attention of some people Tuesday afternoon.

"I just think it looks beautiful to come out here at lunchtime and be able to sit and enjoy the street," Theresa Hicks said. "It looks really nice."

Eating lunch outside will soon be an option for customers at Take 3. The restaurant known for its hamburgers plans to add outdoor seating now that customers have easier access.

"It is just phenomenal," owner Pamela Washington said. "This is just a great experience for Fresno to finally have Downtown open where you can drive through - so much more accessible. You know, access for a business, I'm excited."

Construction is still taking place in the last section of Fulton Street between Fresno and Inyo. A few issues delayed construction by several months, but city leaders say in the end it will all be worth it.

"It is exciting for the whole city, really," Morrison said. "So we can bring back our downtown and get to use our old Main Street."

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