High Line Blog

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maeveMaeve Turner using the Dosatron (affectionately named "Dosie"
by the Horticulture staff) to apply compost tea to specific areas of the High Line.
 

Maeve, one of our five full-time gardeners, has been on staff since the High Line's opening this past June.  Originally from England, Maeve grew up in Westfield, New Jersey, and first discovered her love for gardening while working at Morning Glory Farm on Martha's Vineyard, where she helped out with everything from seeding to planting to weeding.  After Morning Glory, Maeve completed an internship at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden (which she says was "awesome"), then worked for a private gardening company.  Each job, she says, was a unique experience, and affirmed that gardening is the work environment she enjoys most.

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ed devlinEd Devlin, on his wedding day in 1950, and working at the Metropolitan Museum in 2009
 

We were recently lucky enough to speak with a former New York Central Railroad employee named Ed Devlin. Sixty years ago, Ed worked at the rail yards that fed onto the High Line when it was part of a working railroad. He was kind enough to share his memories from long before the park in the sky was ever known as the High Line.

ED: It was 1949, and I had just come out of the Marine Corps. I worked at New York Central from 1949 to 1953. My hours were 6:00 PM to 2:00 AM – devastating hours for a newlywed. Approximately once a week, I'd be sent over to the rail yards at 10th to 12th  Avenue in the west 70's. My job was just to look at the freight train as it went by.

I would stand there near a spotlight and do two things. I had to write down the name of each freight car – New York Central, Bangor & Maine, Pennsylvania Railroad, Santa Fe, etc. – and the number on the car, which had something like nine or ten digits. And even though the train was moving at maybe eight or nine miles an hour, it went by fast. It was tricky. I had to remember the names and numbers and write quickly.

At first I wondered why I was doing this. And then I found out that each railroad would charge the other railroads a passage fee for using their tracks. Additionally, it was important to make sure the cars were in the right order for every building scheduled for the drop. The cars' numbers related to their proper order.

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High Line Opening Season Umbrella.
 

We're proud to announce the launch of our new High Line Web Shop!

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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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In addition to all the shoveling the High Line staff did to keep the park open this weekend, our temporary Maintenance & Operations facility has been moved down to the southern entrance of the High Line, at street level. In order to get ready for the joining of Section 1 to Section 2 (still under construction) the M&O trailers (where our gardeners, maintenance workers, and Rangers house equipment and offices) were moved 10 blocks south, just west of the Gansevoort Stairway.

trailerM&O container being lifted off of the 20th Street location and moved to ground level
at Gansevoort & Washington Streets. Photo by Jenny Staley.
 

The trailers and containers were crane-lifted off the High Line and loaded onto flatbed trucks that transported everything to their new southern location, where they will rest until construction for the new Whitney Museum begins at Gansevoort and Washington Street, adjacent to the High Line.

trailerContainer being set down into its new location just west of the Gansevoort Entrance.
Photo by Jenny Staley.
 
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If you haven't already caught glimpses of the High Line dressed in white, check out this snow-strewn photo that our Maintenance & Operations staff took this weekend.

pipeThe Diller - von Furstenberg Sundeck under a white blanket.
 

In order to clear the snow, the crew used various tools and equipment including: a Bobcat mini-tracker with spinning broom, power brooms, push brooms, snow-blowers, shovels, and eco-friendly ice melt. Brooms (and power brooms) are the best way to remove snow safely and efficiently from the concrete planking and pathways.

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