I was lucky to be back in New York at the beginning of August for a friend's wedding. Apart from the amazing nuptials, the other highlight of my summer holiday was finally visiting The High Line.
'The High Line as it currently stands is a testament to reuse.' Mark Dion, High Line of the Borough of Manhattan.
The High Line was designed by James Corner Field Operations and Diller, Scofidio and Renfro. Repurposing of the railway into an urban park began construction in 2006, with the first phase opening in 2009 and the second phase opening in 2012.
The High Line is an ‘aerial greenway’ - urban renewal meets landscape architecture, and has created a public space that spans 20 New York City blocks. It is suspended above street level on the site of an old rail way line. The railway line was removed temporarily to restore the High Line for public use, and the tracks were then put back in to their original locations.
The structure is a combination of old and new: the existing railway tracks and original structures, with the newly designed public areas - seating, water features, viewing platforms and pathways.
There has been talk of a 'copycat' High Line in Sydney on the old railway tracks between Broadway and Darling Harbour, called The Goods Line. It is a partnership with the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority and the City of Sydney, and is being created by Aspect Studio and Chrofi Architects.
We can only hope that this urban renewal project comprising of native flora and fauna, public space, exhibition and event spaces and a green thoroughfare, will be at least as successful and encourage as much development and public interaction as it has in New York. To read more about The Goods Line, click here.