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FHL E-Mail Newsletter
September 26, 2008

High Line Tours at Open House New York, Oct. 4 and 5: Lottery Now Open
October 2: Western Rail Yards EIS Draft Scoping Session, and Recap of September 15 Public Forum
Construction Update: 820 Washington Street Demolition
High Line Planting Continues
Grassroots Campaign for the High Line

For the second year, the High Line at the rail yards will be open to the public as part of the annual Open House New York (OHNY) weekend. Tours are free, but reservations are required. Our staff and volunteers will lead 30-minute walks on the High Line's northern section, which still exists its wild, self-seeded state. Please note, tours will not enter any of the areas of the High Line currently under construction.

Due to the anticipated high demand for tours, tour participants will be selected via lottery. The lottery is now open, and will close on Monday, September 29 at 4PM. Names will be chosen at random on Tuesday, September 30. We apologize that we cannot accommodate all those who would like to come up on the High Line. Due to safety concerns, Friends of the High Line, the City, and the railroad that owns this section of the High Line can only allow a certain number on the Line at one time.

High Line tours at Open House New York
Saturday & Sunday, October 4 & 5
11:00 AM to 4:00 PM
FREE, reservations required
(Each tour is 30 minutes)

Enter the lottery

Because we anticipate a high volume of responses, we ask our supporters to limit themselves to two tickets apiece. All tour participants must be at least 18 years of age.

OHNY is an annual weekend-long event that opens sites of architectural and historical interest to the public. The High Line has been an OHNY site since the event began in 2003, but before 2007 participants were only permitted to view the High Line from surrounding buildings.

Special thanks to CSX Transportation and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation for making these tours possible. CSX Transportation is the transportation company that owns this section of the High Line. CSX donated the section of the High Line below 30th Street to the City in 2005.

Enter the lottery

To kick off the weekend on Friday, October 3, join OHNY, The Architect's Newspaper, and One York for spectacular views, great music, and fantastic company at the OHNY Launch Party.

OHNY Weekend Launch Party
Penthouse, One York, Tribeca (corner of Sixth Avenue & Canal Street)
Friday, October 3, 7:00 - 9:00 PM
Tickets are $40 in advance, $50 at the door



Thursday, October 2, 2008
2:00-5:00 PM and 6:00-9:00 PM
(the public is welcome at either or both sessions)
Jacob K. Javits Convention Center
Room 1A-03-05
34th Street and 11th Avenue
(enter on 11th Avenue)

On October 2, there will be a public scoping meeting to gather public input on the Draft Scope of Work for the Western Rail Yards Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The MTA is required to host a scoping session at which the public is welcome to provide verbal or written testimony. This represents the first official action in the public review process for the rezoning of the Western Rail Yards.

For more details on the scoping session and how to submit written testimony, download the flier (PDF).

Please let us know if you're planning on attending. E-mail railyards@thehighline.org.

Recap of September 15 Public Forum: On September 15, approximately 200 members of the community gathered to hear the Related Companies present their new plan for the rail yards and to provide their comments and questions. While the developers expressed enthusiasm for the High Line, they did not make any commitment to full preservation of the High Line, so we are concerned that certain parts of the structure may be at risk.

Specifically, Related indicated that they have concerns about the 10th Avenue Spur—the easternmost portion of the High Line on the site—so this part of the High Line is particularly vulnerable. In addition, Related is currently proposing to build a residential tower over the High Line along 30th Street, effectively blocking the 30th Street view corridor to the west. For a summary of High Line issues and a map of these high-risk areas, download the PDF.

In response to the presentation, the public was emphatic that the entire High Line must be preserved, including the 10th Avenue Spur. Preservation of the High Line was one of the top two issues—along with affordable housing—most often expressed by the speakers at the forum. We want to thank all the High Line supporters who turned out to the event—many in their 2007 High Line Rail Yards T-shirts—to show their support. A very clear message was sent to the developer, the MTA, and other stakeholders, that full preservation of the High Line is a top priority of the community.

For a full recap of the event, please see the article in Chelsea Now.

We wish to thank the Hudson Yards Community Advisory Committee, Community Board 4, and Related Companies for sponsoring the forum.


At the High Line's southern end at Gansevoort and Washington Streets, progress is being made on demolition of 820 Washington Street, an empty meat market building, to prepare for the opening of Section 1 and future development of the site. The site will be developed into a new Whitney Museum building and the High Line maintenance and operations facility. Scaffolding has recently been built on the south side of the building. Demolition of the structure will begin within the next two weeks and will continue through the end of the year. The loading docks at 820 Washington Street were demolished last year to make room for the High Line's Gansevoort entrance.

You can read more about the Whitney and see renderings on our blog.



The High Line's planting team, which includes landscape architects from Field Operations, SiteWorks, Kelco Landscaping, Inc., and The Plant Group, continues to install the High Line's plants in the beds of Section 1. The beds between 18th and 20th Streets are now complete, and the planting team is now working on the block between Little West 12th and 13th Streets. Work for this section includes the installation of grasses, perennials, and several small trees, like the sassafras shown above.


This month, Friends of the High Line launched its Grassroots Campaign for the High Line. This effort will support the completion of plantings and features created by our renowned design team and ensure that the High Line lives up to our collective vision for this new park. We hope you’ll consider participating in this effort to make our collective dream come true.

The Grassroots Campaign is a part of our capital campaign, which raises funds exclusively for the High Line's construction. Every dollar contributed to the Grassroots Campaign will go directly toward construction of the High Line so that it fulfills every aspect of its carefully crafted design.

Support the Grassroots Campaign today!



529 West 20th Street, Suite 8W
New York, NY 10011
(212) 206-9922
(212) 206-9118 fax

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