Pre-Construction Work to Begin on High Line

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Pre-Construction Work to Begin on High Line

As we prepare for the much-anticipated start of construction on the High Line, you may notice activity on the High Line in the coming month. Protective fencing will be constructed by the City's contractors on the High Line from Gansevoort Street to 20th Street—the first section of the Line to be transformed. This fencing will protect the structure's iconic steel railings during construction. It will also protect workers on the High Line and people on the streets below. A precise start-date for the construction itself has not been identified, but we expect that work will begin in the next few months.

Following these preparations, construction of Section 1 will include two separate scopes of work: site preparation (2006-2007), followed by construction of the access systems and public landscape (2007-2008). Site preparation will include removal and storage of railroad tracks; removal of gravel ballast; steel and concrete repair; abatement and painting of steel; repairs to the drainage system; and pigeon mitigation.

It's important to note that much of the self-sown landscape currently atop the High Line must be removed to permit repairs to the underlying structure. This is being done only after careful study of the long-term needs of the High Line structure and the future public amenity. A number of steps will taken to ensure that historic and wild quality of the High Line, as documented in Joel Sternfeld's photographs, is embodied by the future public landscape. Some rails will be returned to their original locations (every inch of rail has been mapped and tagged to enable sections to be reinstalled). And in their landscape design, the design team takes cues from the meadows, thickets, and robust grasses that now grow wild on the High Line. To learn more about plans for the public landscape, please join FHL and the City of New York on Monday, February 13, for a free High Line Public Design Presentation.

FHL encourages you to take pictures of the structure now (from the street or from adjoining buildings), before its transformation begins. Take pictures before February 15. Send your favorites to and we will try to post as many as possible on our Web site. Remember: The High Line remains off-limits to the public, and trespassers are subject to prosecution, so please limit yourself to taking pictures from street level or from adjoining buildings.