It was a cold, rainy morning when I walked towards 30th Street, still in doubt if it was really a good idea to walk the High Line with this weather. I was just too curious to see what it looked like, after I heard about this project where a disused railroad line, the West Side Line, was converted to a mile long aerial greenway. When I reached it, I realized that I was the only one: that was already one advantage thanks to this weather. There are plans to extend the High Line further north, but for now, this is the beginning. When I started walking south, I immediately realized the benefit of this elevated greenway: the view of the city and the buildings alongside the High Line were original and unconventional.
Some joggers passed me; another advantage of the High Line: unobstructed running right in the middle of the city. Some call it a park which, in a way, it is: an elongated park, often less than 10m wide. For me, it was nothing less than a brilliant idea. Looking down at the streets below, never having to worry about traffic, seeing the city from a different angle; it is like walking in a separate world, while still being connected to the real one. This is for instance the case where a frame with lighting is built, allowing a view of the street below. Moreover, effort has been made to integrate the old railroad tracks into the walkway, while the path is not straight, but meanders through plants, bushes, and flowers. Much of the track runs through the Chelsea neighbourhood; apparently, the coming of the High Line has stimulated development in the area.
There are some advanced, unique buildings along the way, the walk along the line is never boring - on the contrary. Graffiti has already been made at eye level for those walking the High Line. The stretch through the Meatpacking District is also interesting: the tracks were designed to run through buildings, to facilitate loading and unloading the trains. The High Line does the same, so you walk right through buildings. On this cold, rainy morning, I was very happy with the shelter I found: my hands were freezing and I used the roof over my head to sway my arms to get warm. When I finally reached the south end at Gansevoort Street, I realized that I had been in doubt whether to walk the High Line or not. I forgot about the doubts: it had been a great walk with unexpected views and surprises.
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from High Line (U.S.A.). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to High Line.
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