The High Line (also known as the High Line Park) is a 1.45-mile-long (2.33 km) New York City linear park built in Manhattan on an elevated section of a disused New York Central Railroad spur called the West Side Line. Inspired by the 3-mile (4.8-kilometer) Promenade plantée, a similar project in Paris completed in 1993, the High Line has been redesigned and planted as an aerial greenway and rails-to-trails park.
The High Line Park uses the disused southern portion of the West Side Line running to the Lower West Side of Manhattan. It runs from Gansevoort Street – three blocks below 14th Street – in the Meatpacking District, through Chelsea, to the northern edge of the West Side Yard on 34th Street near the Javits Convention Center. An unopened spur extends above 30th Street to Tenth Avenue. Formerly, the High Line went as far south as a railroad terminal to Spring Street just north of Canal Street, however, most of the lower section was demolished in 1960, with another small portion of the lower section being demolished in 1991.
Repurposing of the railway into an urban park began construction in 2006, with the first phase opening in 2009, and the second phase opening in 2011. The third and final phase officially opened to the public on September 21, 2014. A short stub above Tenth Avenue and 30th Street, is still closed as of September 2014, but will open by 2015. The project has spurred real estate development in the neighborhoods that lie along the line. As of September 2014, the park gets nearly 5 million visitors annually.
The last vestige of the High Line
We are above the intersection of Bethune Street and Washington Street, where we have the rare opportunity to explore the last remaining unimproved piece of the former New York Central West Side High Line. This last block long piece of the right of way goes between Bethune Street and Bank Street, along Washington Street, and runs through the former Bell Laboratories.