High line

From railway to park


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US United States
Web http://www.thehighline.org/


About the project Edit

The High Line is a 1.45-mile (2.33 km) New York City park built on a section of the former elevated freight railroad of the West Side Line, along the lower west side of Manhattan. The High Line used to be a freight rail line, in operation from 1934 to 1980. It lifted freight traffic 30 feet in the air, removing dangerous trains from the streets of Manhattan's largest industrial district. The conversion from railway to park is an initiative by Friends of the High Line, a non-profit organization formed in 1999 when the High Line was under threat of demolition. The southernmost section, from Gansevoort Street to 20th Street, opened as a city park on June 8, 2009. The middle section is still being refurbished, while the northernmost section's future remains uncertain, depending on a development project currently underway at the Hudson Yards.

In what ways is this project unique and creative? Edit

It is a unique and creative to transform an abandoned industrial structure into a safe public space. Friend of the High Line took the opportunity to create an innovative new public space, raised above the city streets, with views of the Hudson River and the city skyline. It offers a hopeful model for industrial reuse for other cities around the world.

What is the social value of this project? Edit

The public space blends plant life (reminiscent of the quiet contemplative nature of the self-seeded landscape and wild plantings that once grew on the unused High Line) with long, narrow "planks," forming a smooth, linear, virtually seamless walking surface. The public environment on the High Line contain special features, including a water feature, viewing platforms, a sundeck, and gathering areas to be used for performances, art exhibitions and educational programs.

What is the potential of this project to expand and develop? Edit

The city of Paris successfully converted a similar rail viaduct into an elevated park called the Promenade Plantée. Projects similar to the High Line are in early stages in St. Louis, Philadelphia, Jersey City, Chicago, and Rotterdam. There is great potential to reconvert old structure from the industrial period to public spaces in many cities around the world.

What was the triggering factor of this project? Edit

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