Corcoran Street started life as a small one block street named "Willard Street" connecting Peabody Street with Main Street. By 1881, it had become Depot Street, named for the Durham train station at its southern terminus. By 1887, it had been renamed Corcoran Street; per Wyatt Dixon, it was so named after William WIlson Corcoran, prominent philanthropist.
Prior to 2005, Corcoran Street T-ed into East Chapel Hill St., and was discontinuous with Foster Street - a short jog to the west. - heading northward. In 2005-2007, Corcoran was re-aligned to cut across the former Academy of Music / Washington Duke Hotel Site in order to align with Foster Street heading north. This was intimated to be a matter of great import for downtown revitalization. In the process, two rather useless brick-filled public spaces were created. Aside from a giant bull, they are empty and lifeless.
See also South Corcoran Street