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cut outNew space for the 30th Street Entrance.
Photo by Patrick Cullina.
 

The latest on the High Line's next section: the construction team recently removed FOURTEEN TONS of steel up at 30th Street to make way for the future stairs and elevator.

When Section 2 opens, 30th Street will be the northernmost access point on the High Line, at least until the Rail Yards section is built.  The entrance is located right at "the curve", where the High Line begins its iconic sweep westward towards the Hudson River.

Like the stairs at Gansevoort Street and 14th Street, the 30th Street stairs will cut through the structure, bringing visitors face-to-face with the High Line's steel beams and rivets. Click through for a rendering.


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Dear Friends,

2009 has been a remarkable year for the High Line. After spending the spring working on the final stages of construction, we opened the first section of the park in June. Since then, we estimate that nearly 2 million people have visited. We hope you were among these first visitors to the High Line, and that you return again and again in 2010.

The High Line's first year as a public park has been truly amazing. We've pulled together some of our favorite pictures from this incredible, historic year. We hope you enjoy them!

We hope you'll continue to support the High Line as we prepare for 2010.

Many thanks, and happy New Year,


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2009
 

Park visitors stroll and relax on the Diller von Furstenberg Sundeck between 14th and 15th Streets. The Sundeck is one of the High Line's most popular gathering spots, especially for sunbathers on bright summer days, and as a place to watch the sunset. Photo by Iwan Baan

"...The High Line is a hit, and not just with tourists but with New Yorkers who are openly relishing a place where they can reflect and relax enough to get a new perspective on Manhattan."
– Diane Cardwell, For High Line Visitors, Park is a Railway Out of Manhattan, New York Times

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We are proud to announce that the High Line has been bestowed with an award from the U.S. section of the International Association of Art Critics: First Prize for "Best Show in a Public Space."  I have the honor of accepting this award at a reception at the Guggenheim Museum, alongside esteemed colleagues. A complete list of awardees is here (PDF).  Thank you AICA USA!

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pipeImage courtesy of fieldoperations.net
 

James Corner, principal and founder of James Corner Field Operations, the High Line project lead, will lecture on his recent and current works at the Cooper Union on Wednesday, December 9th.

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Parking Day 2008 Video from Streetfilms



Park(ing) Day, one of our favorite yearly public space happenings, takes to the New York City streets this Friday!

This international event transforms metered parking spaces into playgrounds, parks, creative installations, and unusual meeting-grounds for all to hit the pavement and enjoy. Converting car-intended spots throughout the five boroughs, these park(ing) spaces are a great example of  street-space reclaimed. Park(ing) Day's mission doesn't sound too far off from the High Line's reclamation of  space for the public.

Last year the High Line participated in the Park(ing) Day extravaganza, one of 57 spaces across the city. This year, our newly-opened park hovers 30 feet higher than most parking spaces, but encourages you to check out a nearby Park(ing) Day space on ground level. A map and description of all the spots is here.

One of our favorites is right here in the neighborhood.  Weave the Hearts, sponsored by the West Harlem Art Fund and created by Japanese artist Shintaro Tokairin, can be located at 400 W. 14th Street, near 9th Avenue. Tokairin has created a woven installation piece which will encapsulate the space, inviting visitors to relax and indulge in the artistically-inspired parking spot.


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EnlargePhoto by Brian Finke

The "Goings on About Town" photo in this week's New Yorker featured a familiar sight to anyone who's strolled the High Line on a hot day.  The Sundeck's lounge chairs – both rolling and stationary – have become a veritable Mecca for sunbathers.

For those who remember the early iterations of the High Line's design, the photo also reminds us of something...


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lisa switkinThe Sundeck's lounge chairs are a popular spot for resting and people-watching.
 

Lisa Switkin is Associate Principal and Lead Designer of the High Line at James Corner Field Operations. She writes today about her initial responses to seeing the High Line's design turned into reality:

"After spending the past five years on the High Line in mostly solitary situations walking the line to familiarize myself with every curve, view and condition or in small groups working through essential design concepts and design and construction details' it is extraordinarily rewarding to finally see it activated and being used and loved by people. Although progress was evident every day as the integrated components of the park came together, I don't think it truly became a reality for me until I was able to stroll up there last Saturday morning as a park user and observer.

"Someone said to me – have you noticed that people have a different pace when they are on the High Line?' This made me smile, as I remember the supportive but skeptical reaction when we first stated our basic mantra of 'Keep it Simple, Keep it Wild, Keep it Slow, and Keep it Quiet' that inspired the design. 'Can you even do that in New York?' was a common response. And yet, it's true; people do have a slower pace and sense of delay when they are on the line. They are suspended in a unique urban condition - both a part of the City and removed from the City at the same time. I hope the magical sense of surprise and bewilderment that the site produces itself, along with the legible and deliberate elongated transitions embedded into the design - from streetside to topside, hard to soft, woodland to grassland, river to city - give people the opportunity to see the City in new and unexpected ways; the familiar and iconic side as well as the up close, textural, and backside of New York City."

More of Lisa's photos after the jump.

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Metropolismag.com has published an interesting article on a remarkable pair of architect/developers, Della Valle + Bernheimer (DB). Led by the duo of Jared Della Valle and Andrew Bernheimer, they have begun to make their mark on the Chelsea neighborhood by "combining design excellence with the terrors and pleasures of real estate development." DB are responsible for two of the more prominent buildings currently visible from the High Line, 459 West 18th Street and 245 Tenth Avenue, the latter of which can be seen flanking Section 2 of the High Line, still under construction.

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As if we could love the Charlie Rose Show any more.

There's a lot of High Line talk at the beginning of this interview, plus discussion of Diller Scofidio + Renfro's other work: The Blur Building, the ICA in Boston, and of course the new Alice Tully Hall.

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