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Wednesday, September 02, 2009

High Line, New York, United States

The High Line creates new public space from derelict urban platform
The High Line is a 1.2 mile conversion of an abandoned elevated railway into a new public park along the west side of lower Manhattan. The project establishes an urban corridor for habitat, wildlife and people, providing opportunities for future links between neighbourhoods, greenways and parkways. The line transforms 6 acres of paved surface into landscape.

Through a strategy of agri-tecture - part agriculture, part architecture - the High Line surface is digitized into discrete units of paving and planting which are assembled along 1.5 miles into a variety of gradients from 100% paving to 100% soft, richly vegetated biotopes. The paving system consists of individual pre-cast concrete planks with open joints to encourage emergent growth like wild grass through cracks in the sidewalk. The resulting “pathless” landscape encourages the public to meander in unscripted ways. The park accommodates the wild, the cultivated, the intimate, and the social. Access points are durational experiences designed to prolong the transition from the frenetic pace of city streets to the slow otherworldly landscape above.

The High Line was a design collaboration by James Corner Field Operations and Diller Scofidio + Renfro.
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