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The Excessive Line Park

A nature gem on Manhattan’s decrease West Aspect

The High Line Park by the West Aspect Freeway in Manhattan is one in all my most favourite parks on the earth. Probably the most distinct character is that it runs above floor, on the third-floor stage, on rail tracks that have been initially constructed within the early 1920’s for freight trains, transporting items from the docks of decrease Manhattan to the various warehouses and factories positioned within the northern areas of Manhattan’s West Aspect.

In 1999, the deserted remaining rail construction of the Excessive Line was threatened with demolition. Neighborhood residents Joshua David and RobertHammond fashioned Associates of the Excessive Line to advocate for the preservation and reuse of the construction.

In 2002, by means of the management of Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the New York Metropolis Council, the Metropolis of New York boldly dedicated to rework the Excessive Line right into a one-of-a-kind park.

And thus, the concept of the Excessive Line Park took off

The Excessive Line walkway by Gansevoort Road. The Whitney Museum could be seen by means of the bushes.

The Excessive Line Park has been designed by architects Diller, Scofidio + Renfro, James Corner Field Operations, Buro Happold, L’Observatoire International, Piet Oudolf, Robert Sielman Associates, and sponsored by Visionary Supporter, Champions, Patrons, Non-public Establishments, and Authorities assist.

In 2021, the Excessive Line stretches 25 city blocks, from Gansevoort Road within the Meatpacking District, to thirty fourth Road by Hudson Yards. The walkway is embraced by lush stretches of greens resembling city forests, grasslands, flower beds, set up artwork, sculptures, and mini fountains.

The foliage modifications with the seasons, as do all of the flowers and grasses.

View of the Whitney Museum by means of the tender spring foliage.

The mint inexperienced younger leaves on the birch bushes, the white blossoming dogwood bushes, or the pink Japanese Redbud tree blossoms greet the guests with with exuberant splashes of colour.

A number of blocks up north the view opens as much as the city streets surrounding the Excessive Line. It is a view onto the well-known Chelsea market district the place yow will discover many eating places, espresso outlets, international IT and style homes, and the Chelsea Market mall.

View from the Diller — von Furstenberg Sundeck, onto the Chelsea Market district.

As you stroll previous the Chelsea market space, examples of ultra-modernist city structure is on full show. You might be coming into the world of futurism and structuralism. The Excessive Line snakes alongside a hypercity that has been underneath growth for many years, and continues to be evolving on this stretch of Manhattan’s West facet.

Hyper-modernity on full show.

That is the place you discover excessive constructing angles, effervescent home windows, numerous glass frontage, all held collectively by glistening metallic and metal buildings. Sometimes, the view opens to glimpses of the Empire State Constructing, reminding one in all Manhattan’s earlier phases of utmost constructing.

View of the Empire State Constructing from twentieth Road & tenth Avenue.

As you retain strolling north, the Hudson Yard buildings come into sight, redefining Manhattan’s skyline ceaselessly.

A stretch of the Excessive Line stroll between twentieth & twenty third Streets.

In between, stretches of bushes type a cover of cascading greens, offering shade and even a cool breeze. Benches flank the stroll method.

Lush bushes within the spring are planted on each side of the stroll method.
Inexperienced areas stuffed with birches, pines, and shrubs.

A few of the vantage factors produce superbly natural inexperienced areas. Many birds relaxation within the lush foliage.

A cantilevered glass excessive rise on the left, Hudson Yards buildings straight forward.

Different stretches alongside the Excessive Line supply up a smorgasbord of futuristic structure and hyper-urban growth. Buildings absorb each doable developable sq. foot, typically leaning into air areas above the park.

A public sculpture simulating an improvised water tower, on show,

Not all city areas are created for the leisurely citizen. The atmosphere of and round to Excessive Line Park enchantment to individuals who can embrace the ultra-modern, smooth, metallic aesthetic of the hyper-plugged-in. The density of the buildings permits for workplace complexes hugging house buildings, rendering the work-to-life steadiness seamless. Such atmosphere does require an enormous dose of summary pondering as a way to extract a way of home-base feeling for its denizens.

Nevertheless, strolling the Excessive Line Park is a pleasure of city discovery. One does now not have to journey to super-metropolitan locations comparable to Hong Kong or Shanghai, however can come to Manhattan’s West Aspect to expertise futurism.

A map of the Excessive Line stroll method.

Neighborhood residents principally frequent to Excessive Line Park early within the mornings, lengthy earlier than the vacationers stream in for a respite of the hustle and bustle of the Large Apple. It is part of discovery and everybody’s expertise shall be totally different. I do advocate a go to.

The place nature meets city growth.
  • The Excessive Line was constructed by the New York Central Railroad between 1929 and 1934 to raise harmful freight trains from Manhattan’s streets. Initially extending all the way down to the St. John’s Park Terminal at Clarkson Road, the Excessive Line was a part of a a lot bigger rail infrastructure undertaking referred to as the West Aspect Enchancment, which eradicated street-level prepare crossings from Spuyten Duyvil to Decrease Manhattan. The Excessive Line’s trains carried meat, produce, and dairy merchandise into warehouses and factories on the third-floor stage. It was referred to as the “Life Line of New York.” For a few years, the Excessive Line was an important a part of the busy manufacturing panorama of the economic West Aspect. Nevertheless, as trucking started to switch rail as the first technique of transferring freight in New York Metropolis, prepare visitors declined on the Excessive Line, and the southernmost part was torn down. By 1980, the trains had stopped working. What remained of the Excessive Line, from Gansevoort Road to thirty fourth Road, was slowly taken over by a self-sown panorama, exhibiting the ability of nature to beat even monumental, man-made buildings.

All photos © Eva Schicker 2021.

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