I had a great opportunity to visit the High Line in New York recently to meet some staff and volunteers who gave an excellent tour of this city regeneration initiative.
Built in the late 1920s as a freight only line the ‘High Line’ in New York served many factories and warehouses and was raised above ground to reduce congestion, improve safety and increase efficiency.
By 1980 the last train ran along the tracks and for the next decade or so the High Line became derelict and a no go area. It was only with the threat of demolition in the 1990s that local people and city organisations came together to work out a future for the line.
And what a great example of urban regeneration it has been! I was particularly impressed with how well it is managed with a combination of the Friends of the High Line volunteers and staff and the city parks dept among others. Plus how the old architecture fits in with the modern new build of offices and homes. Now a tourist attraction in its own right the next section to be opened, with views of the Hudson River, will have minimal management where visitors will be able to walk along a path through self-sown vegetation to contrast that of the more managed southern section.
More High Line images can be viewed here.