FROM FRIENDS OF THE HIGH LINE:
The Spur is the gateway to the High Line at the Rail Yards. It extends across the intersection of 10th Avenue and West 30th Street. Decades ago, this extension, called the 10th Avenue Spur, connected with the Morgan Processing and Distribution Center, allowing freight trains to carry mail and packages to and from the upper-floor loading docks of the post office building. Today, the Spur is the widest area on the High Line and occupies a strategic position in the neighborhood, where it will serve as a visual access point to Hudson Yards, and offer visitors a new and unique park experience.
The new design for the Spur will offer the public an immersive experience of nature in the heart of New York City. Visitors will enter a circular structure lined with dense woodland plantings that create an intimate setting. The structure will also provide much-needed work space and amenities, such as public restrooms.
The High Line, in collaboration with James Corner Field Operations and Piet Oudolf, is a new 1.5 mile long public park built on an abandoned elevated railroad stretching from the Meatpacking District to the Hudson Rail Yards in Manhattan. Inspired by the melancholic, unruly beauty of this postindustrial ruin, where nature has reclaimed a once vital piece of urban infrastructure, the new park interprets its inheritance. It translates the biodiversity that took root after it fell into ruin in a string of site-specific urban microclimates along the stretch of railway that include sunny, shady, wet, dry, windy, and sheltered spaces. Through a strategy of agri-tecture--park architecture, part architecture-- the High Line surface id digitized into discrete units of paving and planting which are assembled along the 1.5 miles into a variety of gradients from 100% paving to 100% soft, richly vegetated biotopes. The paving system consists of individual pre-cast concrete planks with open joints to encourage emergent growth like wild grass through cracks in the sidewalk. The long paving units have tapered ends that comb into plating beds creating a textured, "pathless" landscape where the public can meander in unscripted ways. The park accommodates the wild, the cultivated, the intimate, and the social. Access points are durational experiences designed to prolong the transition from the frenetic pace of city streets to the slow otherworldly landscape above.