Monday, July 8, 2013

Welcome to the High Line

On a hot summer day in Manhattan, we visited a park.  It was 93 degrees and humid, but nothing was going to stop us.
Echinacea purpurea "Vintage Wine"


This is what the park looks like from street level as you walk on the cobblestones of  Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District.

Once upon a time, this park was a "spur" of the New York Central Railroad.  Freight trains ran on this from 1934 to 1980.  Then, for years, it sat there, abandoned.  Eventually,  CSX Transportation, Inc. donated the abandoned line to the City of New York.
Some of the original track is still there, planted in flowers, grasses and trees.
Climb these stairs (or take the elevator) and prepare to be amazed.  You are about to walk on the High Line.

What is the High Line? It is trees, plants, wildflowers, domestic flowers, grasses, food vendors, young people, old people.  Four million people a year visit it.  It even has a blog.  One mile of the 1.45 miles is now open.  The park won't be complete until 2014, but there is so much to see now.

If you aren't into plants, look at the public art (more on that in another post).  If you aren't into art, look at the signs, and the city scenery around you.  No matter how many times you have seen Manhattan (I am a native New Yorker, by the way, and lived there for some 21 years) you haven't seen the biggest city in our country like this.

Come with me on my High Line walk.  I'll be posting photos (and details) from time to time in the coming weeks.

What is your favorite public park?


  1. Sounds like a cool park! I love history and places. I find it interesting to think about those who have gone before us and what they thought of the place we are visiting. What would it have been like in its early days when trains roamed the rails now hidden beneath the shrubbery?

    1. There actually is a website (I need to relocate it as I didn't bookmark it the first time - shame on me!) where you can take a virtual tour of the High Line from before it was turned into a city park. And I know there are histories of the tracks from the days when it was called the West Side Line of the New York Central Railroad. I am actually old enough (60) to remember the New York Central of my New York City youth. One day I hope to have the time to explore the history further.

  2. Hi - stopping by from the UBC and Facebook! Love your pictures - the flowers especially are beautiful! I'm impressed that you managed to go for a walk in spite of the heat!

    I went to school in Nyack, New York, WAY back in 1976-1980, and visited Manhattan a few times with friends who were native New Yorkers. It was impressive, but also rather overwhelming and intimidating to this country gal from New Hampshire (and now living in Maine!)

    My favorite parks up here in Maine are oceanfront parks, like Acadia National Park and Reid State Park.

    1. I have visited Maine (Southern Maine, that is) three times and hope to get to Acadia National Park one day. In New Hampshire I have only been to Nashua and the surrounding area and I also owe New Hampshire more of my time. Since I left New York City almost 40 years ago, I admit Manhattan overwhelms me, too - especially on a 93 degree day. I never imagined riding the subway to cool down.

  3. What a cool place to visit. Thanks for sharing. I like the idea that is open while still under construction. Fun to watch its progress!

    1. I was so tired of the heat when I got to the northern end - which is the end that is being expanded-that I didn't pay much attention to the construction. I am now kicking myself because I didn't take pictures. Oh well....It is scheduled to open next year so I may not get another chance to visit before then.


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