The final section of the High Line in New York has now opened
The final section of the High Line in New York has opened to the public, realising an ambitious urban renewal project that has taken 20 years to complete.
The newest section is called the Spur, and it extends east along West 30th Street and terminates above 10th Avenue, offering 360-degree views of New York City. In the early 1900s, the western area around the Meatpacking District and Chelsea was the largest industrial section of Manhattan, and elevated tracks were created to move freight off the cluttered streets below. As the city evolved, the rails eventually became obsolete, and a plan was made to convert the scarring strands of metal into a unique elevated public green space. The High Line project began in 2009, and it’s been one of New York’s star attractions ever since.
"The design of the Spur has gone through many iterations over the years: from theater, to garden, to woodland, to event platform, to an immersive ‘bowl,’ among others," says James Corner, CEO of James Corner Field Operations who was the project leader. "We ended up with the best solution, typical High Line: tough, simple and authentic. Leaving the large lofted space of the Coach Passage, you enter the Spur through a lush woodland, which opens into a large clearing with large-scale artwork on the Plinth. This dramatic space is flanked by generous seating and overlooks and immerses you in the massive scale of the surrounding city."
The Plinth is the first site on the High Line dedicated solely to a rotating series of new, monumental, contemporary art commissions. Simone Leigh’s Brick House is the inaugural Plinth commission, and it's a 16-foot-tall bronze bust of a black woman, whose torso conflates the forms of a skirt and a clay house. As part of the opening of the Spur, the High Line also commissioned We Are Here, a series of text-based sound installations that can be heard in two balconies in the Coach Passage along 30th Street, at the 23rd Street Seating Steps, and in the Sunken Overlook at 17th Street.
"The High Line is one of the most iconic and unique parks in the world," says Mitchell J. Silver, NYC Parks Commissioner. "Whether you’re a New Yorker or a visitor, this park offers so many different views and experiences. From its incredible gardens, its amazing art, and its great programming, there’s something for everyone, and the Spur complements the park wonderfully."
For more information, please visit the High Line's website here.