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Please join the City of New York and Friends of the High Line at the Cedar Lake Theater for a High Line design update from Field Operations and Diller Scofidio + Renfro, the design team currently at work on plans for the High Line's transform-ation to public open space. The presentation will focus on the schematic design for the first section of the Line to be constructed, from Gansevoort Street to 20th Street. Much new material has been developed since the last Public Design Presentation, in May 2005 (read the Q & A from the May Design Presentation). The presentation will be followed by an open question-and-answer session. The team's schematic design will continue to evolve, under the guidance of the City of New York and Friends of the High Line, in the subsequent design development phase, and community input will play a vital role in this process.

Space is limited and reservations are required, so RSVP by February 10 to secure your seat.

High Line Public Design Presentation
Monday, February 13, 6:30pm
RSVP by February 10:

Cedar Lake Theater
547 West 26th Street (Between 10th and 11th Avenues)
Subway: Take C, E to 8th Avenue and 23rd Street
Bus: M23 Crosstown to 10th Avenue

Thanks to Cedar Lake for the use of their new theater. Cedar Lake is a New York-based contemporary ballet company dedicated to bringing attention to the talent of recognized and emerging choreographers.

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.

EnlargeJonathan Flaum
Photographer Jonathan Flaum is currently selling prints from "Off the High Line", his series of High Line photographs in color and black-and-white. All prints are made from medium-format film negatives and are hand-printed. These are not digital prints. The print run is limited to 50, and each print is signed by the artist.

View the Photos

8" x 10" – $250
11" x 14" – $350

For orders or inquires please contact Jonathan Flaum:

The Trust for Public Land (TPL) announced on December 30, 2005, that it acquired an abandoned two-mile-long rail corridor running through St. Louis's Produce Row and conveyed it to the Great Rivers Greenway District. The corridor includes a historic elevated rail structure similar to the High Line. It will be developed by the District into a biking and pedestrian route, connecting densely populated neighborhoods north of downtown to the popular Riverfront Trail along the Mississippi River and the Branch Street Trestle Connector, as well as the McKinley Bridge Bikeway leading into Illinois. Planning and design for the project will begin in 2007, with efforts made to connect it to a larger network of paths throughout Missouri and Illinois.

Read the Press Release

On January 4, New York City Council Representative Christine C. Quinn was elected by her fellow Council Members to be Speaker of the New York City Council. Quinn has represented Manhattan District 3, including Greenwich Village, Chelsea, and Hell's Kitchen/Clinton since 1999. She has been a longtime, vocal advocate for the High Line's preservation as public open space since the start of our efforts. Quinn played a crucial role in the 2005 West Chelsea rezoning, which included important provisions for the High Line's reuse. It was largely thanks to the hard work of Quinn on behalf of her community that affordable housing units were significantly increased in the West Chelsea rezoning and that building heights were reduced along a section of 10th Avenue to respect the context of the Chelsea Historic District. Along with Councilmember Gifford Miller, she also led the passage of a 2001 City Council resolution in support of High Line preservation and reuse. This resolution was the first major governmental backing for the project, and it paved the way for all subsequent High Line victories. She is the first female Speaker, as well as the first openly gay Council Member to hold the position. She has been a tireless ally in our work to create a great new public space on the High Line. Friends of the High Line thanks her for all she has done for us and wishes her much success as City Council Speaker.

Scott Stringer, the new Manhattan Borough President, seeks Urban Planners to join his Land Use, Planning, and Development unit. Among other responsibilities, the Planners will track, evaluate, and make recommendations on land use proposals, and undertake community-based planning activities throughout the borough.

Job requirements include: M.S. of Urban Planning and at least two years of work experience, preferably with government, civic, or community-based organizations. Please visit for full job description and instructions on how to apply.

Dia Art Foundation is seeking a highly organized, detail-oriented individual to join Dia as Public Affairs Associate. This position serves as primary contact for press and public information by managing media and public communications for Dia's New York City and Beacon, New York, museums and other existing facilities and programs.

The ideal candidate will have 2+ years experience working in a museum, non-profit, or contemporary art gallery; strong writing and communication skills; knowledge of contemporary art; and attention to detail and accuracy.
View the complete job listing

In November, FHL's office on West 14th Street was remodeled to accommodate our growing staff. Friends of the High Line thanks Markus Dochantschi and everyone at studioMDA for their inspired design and hard work.

New York-based studioMDA was founded by a former director of Zaha Hadid Architects, Markus Dochantschi, in 2003. The practice focuses on new construction methods and technological innovations, with emphasis on collaboration with the construction industry, structural, mechanical, lighting, and landscape consultants, artists, and other disciplines. Since 2003, the office has completed residential and commercial projects and is currently working on projects in New Jersey, upstate New York, Manhattan, Vermont, Chile, Peru, Switzerland, and Sweden.

View the studioMDA Web site.
On January 18, IAC/InterActiveCorp celebrated the topping-off of its new Manhattan headquarters, designed by Frank Gehry. IAC/InterActiveCorp's CEO, Barry Diller, is a longtime supporter of the High Line project, and he expects that the new headquarters will play a central role in the future of the neighborhood. On January 11, Mr. Diller was quoted in the Wall Street Journal, saying that the High Line District, "is an embryonic neighborhood where we could be a participant... It'll be a wondrous environment to live, to work, to play." Located on a site between 18th and 19th Streets, on the West Side Highway, the IAC/InterActiveCorp headquarters has been designed by Mr. Gehry to evoke the sails of a ship, a reference to the nautical history of the area. The building is expected to open in March 2007.

In his January 26 State of the City address, Mayor Michael Bloomberg cited the High Line as an example of the positive development currently going on in New York. Mayor Bloomberg called the High Line project, "one of the most innovative park projects in the world."

Read the State of the City Address

Railbanking: In November, the High Line was railbanked, ensuring its future as a public park. Railbanking has been our primary goal since Friends of the High Line was founded in 1999.

Federal Authorization/CITU: In June, the federal body that governs the use of rail corridors issued a Certificate of Interim Trail Use (CITU). This concluded 20 years of legal disputes about the High Line and authorized railbanking negotiations to proceed. Above: Front page New York Times headline announcing the authorization.
Read the New York Times Article

Public Design Session: In May, over 400 members of the public gathered at the Bohen Foundation, in the Meatpacking District, for a design presentation and Q+A with the team of Field Operations and Diller Scofidio + Renfro. Above: FHL's Robert Hammond addresses the group.
Read the Q+A

$18 Million in Federal Funding: In August, Senators Schumer and Clinton and Congressman Nadler secured $18 million for the High Line in the multi-year federal transportation bill. Above: Senator Clinton walks on the High Line with FHL's Robert Hammond and Joshua David and other supporters to announce the funding.

West Chelsea Rezoning: In June, the City rezoned West Chelsea to support the High Line's reuse, among other objectives. FHL brought 150 community members to a City Council hearing to support High Line-related provisions in the rezoning proposal.

MoMA Exhibition: From April through October, the Museum of Modern Art exhibited the preliminary design by Field Operations and Diller Scofidio + Renfro. Above: Elizabeth Diller and Ricardo Scofidio, 3rd and 4th from left.

Design Web Site: In April, FHL launched a comprehensive, interactive design Web site showcasing the preliminary design. Special thanks to PS and unitytheory for their Web design expertise.
View the Design Web Site

Community Outreach: In November, FHL hosted a pizza party and project briefing for residents of the Robert Fulton Houses, in Chelsea. It was one of a series of FHL events that engage a full range of community participation in the High Line project. Above: Peter Mullan, FHL's Director of Planning, addresses the group.

  Kitchen / High Line Block Party: In September, FHL teamed up with West Chelsea arts organization The Kitchen to present the Kitchen / High Line Block Party. More than 5,000 people attended the free event, which featured arts and crafts activities, music, entertainment, and food from neighborhood restaurants.

High Line viewing with Open House New York: In October, more than 1,400 people viewed the High Line from the Phillips de Pury & Company auction house as part of the third annual Open House New York weekend.

Education Program: FHL's education program, now in its fourth year, was based this fall at Hudson Guild. Second-graders learned about the High Line's history and future, toured the neighborhood, and built High Line models.

  Dynamic Fundraising Events: As always, FHL's 2005 fundraising events were as dynamic and unique as the High Line project. Top: Over 700 supporters gathered at Cipriani Wall Street for FHL's 5th Annual Summer Benefit. Middle: Anderson Cooper, left, introduces Summer Benefit honorees: environmentalist Ed Norton, City Planning Chair Amanda Burden, and photographer Joel Sternfeld. Bottom: FHL's Joshua David and Robert Hammond compete in the Miss Meatpacking District Gown Contest, part of an irreverent ball at the Roxy honoring Meatpacking District pioneer Florent Morellet.

View Summer Benefit Photos