High Line Blog

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Welcome to the second in our series of posts running down the track records of the various companies competing for the opportunity to build lots and lots of buildings over the West Side Rail Yards. Today we focus on Extell, whose Steven Holl-designed plan (above, and here) has probably received the most architectural critical praise.


Extell, formerly Intell Management and Investment Co., has been an NYC real estate player since 1994, although their profile has heightened considerably in the last few years, especially since their name change in 2005. They are steered by CEO Gary Barnett, a former diamond merchant.

The company notably attempted to play the spoiler during the bid process for Atlantic Yards redevelopment in Brooklyn, submitting a proposal that -- unlike competitor Forest City Ratner's controversial, ultimately adopted plan -- would not have required the usage of eminent domain, or have included a stadium for the NBA's Nets. The Real Deal offers a pretty good rundown on the company here.

After the jump, we have a summary of some of Extell's more notable projects and properties, with pretty illustrations to boot.


In what is an eerily near-perfect re-telling of my own coming-to-New York story, Pat Benatar's Love Is A Battlefield video tells the story of a runaway from small-town America, who, against all odds, fights her way through the grime-ridden dive bars of New York's oily, leather-clad underbelly, to end up dancing in the streets (where else?) under the High Line!


Demolition has started on Sherrill Hall, the Seminary building that sparked a bitter neighborhood battle in Chelsea last year, when Seminary leaders proposed replacing it with a 17-story building. Scaffolding is up. Signs have been posted about asbestos removal and rat-baiting.

no doubt you will ruin it

This is one of my favorite comments cards from our 2003 Ideas Competition. I've kept on my desk since then.

Sanaya Kaufman

As the winter wonderland melted and quickly became a grim rainy day, we at the High Line find ourselves reminiscing about how darn pretty the High Line looks in the snow.  Rusty B is a gal for all seasons!

Here's a little taste to satisfy your winter woes.  These lovely images were taken exactly two years ago -- February 12, 2006 -- months before construction began.  My how the High Line has changed.

More pictures of the High Line in winter after the jump...

Danya Sherman

New York isn't the only city to be blessed with out-of-use elevated railway-- while back home in Chicago last year, I took a hike on the Bloomingdale Trail, the three-mile-long unused rail embankment that runs through Chicago's residential west side.


The plant-covered trail, which trains stopped using in the 1980's, is just 15 feet tall and runs in close proximity to neighborhood schools, playgrounds, and backyards. Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail started in 2003 to seize this exciting opportunity to create new community recreation and park space.

  More pictures and history after the jump.