21 April 2010

High Line Linear Park - New York City

Excerpt from Richard Register's
Ecocity Views blog, 18 April 2010

'...[on a visit to New York City] The high point there was the High Line and the south central neighborhood near the East River where my friend Wendy Brawer of Green Maps fame lives and works in Manhattan around 4th St. I visited the High Line with Steve Bercu, one of our two new recruits to our Ecocity Builders Board of Directors, an officer in the Mazer Foundation and an undaunted Boston bicyclist and lover of the not yet existing thorough-going bicycle city.

It was a stunningly beautiful day and the old elevated rail line, famous for its long abandonment, had been converted into a spectacular yet very subtle linear park flying through the air about three stories up and near by the Hudson River. Over the years since it was used for freight delivery, active from the early 1930s to 1980, weeds, flowers and small trees gradually grew and spread on accumulating dust and organic matter from the plants themselves. It became something of a New York natural history museum of local succession for birds bringing in seeds and fertilizer, insects serving for pollination and all sorts of plants.

Converted to a pedestrian treasure in the last five years, the High Line now features much of the ecological community that self established, long lengths of the tracks themselves and a beautifully designed pathway with benches and many places to stop and ponder the glories of New York, the Hudson River, the Empire State Building to the east, the Statue of Liberty far to the south over the water and on days like that, the sky above...'

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