Discovering a floating park at the High Line

Make way for the High Line’s newest addition: a floating park at the Spur.

Scroll this

The High Line’s newest design project called the Spur.

Chelsea residents, make way for the High Line’s newest addition: a floating park at the Spur. Last week, the High Line unleashed the latest of its design plans at the School of Visual Arts Theatre. Next on the horizon is the proposed High Line at the Rail Yards, which will feature an elevated “immersive bowl-shaped structure” at the third section of the High Line, known at the Spur, at West 30th Street and 10th Avenue. Essentially a bowl-shaped floating garden that will feature interior rooms with walled vegetation and areas to sit, Untapped Cities has aptly described the new design as a “nest in the sky” offering a “sublime and magical experience of nature in the heart of New York City.”

The Spur will be located at West 30th street and Tenth Avenue.

The new structure will have multiple components, providing a space for nature in the city chiefly among them. Rows of public seating will line the interior of the vegetated structure, with plants and trees framing the walls of the “bowl.” Much needed work space and public restrooms will also be located within the structure.

The bowl-shaped addition will be located at the Spur, the widest part of the High Line. Once the new structure at the Spur is complete, the High Line will connect the Meatpacking District, West Chelsea and Clinton/Hell’s Kitchen, according to the High Line Blog. It is anticipated that the “floating garden” will be completed by 2016, representing the last addition to the High Line.

In addition to being another architectural feat of the High Line design team, the space encourages the public to directly engage with nature in the city. The High Line project doesn’t stand alone in urging the public to interact with nature in the urban environment, albeit in small ways. Marielle Anzelone, an urban conservation biologist and founder of NYC Wildflower Week, has proposed introducing mini nature biomes on the street by adding wildflowers and plants on street blocks, alongside trees. Doing so, she has argued for the Huffington Post, will provide “connective habitats for birds, bees and butterflies while engaging neighbors with slivers of wildness and each other.”

Anzelone’s ideas represent a recent trend towards bringing native trees and plants directly into the street grid. At the same time, New York City’s various urban gardens and conservation groups have coexisted alongside the built environment for years, opening spaces to break up the built environment with green. The High Line’s new structure at the Spur represents another way to imagine nature in the city, and importantly, this time, on a massive scale.



Images courtesy of the High Line B