Section 2 of the High Line may be opening soon, but we went to check out controversial Section 3, along Hudson Yards. This section isn’t owned by the city yet–which means it could still be demolished–but in July 2010 it passed the ULURP review process. This means the city can now proceed with the option of purchasing and hopefully developing this final section of the High Line. ULURP stands for Uniform Land Use Review Procedure and is one of the major tools of urban planning and community participation in New York City. Not everything has to go through ULURP but acquisition of land by the city does. [Update: New plans for the section 3 of the High Line unveiled March 2012]
In the concrete jungle that is New York, it’s surprising to see nature in its chaotic, uncontrolled form. Of course, James Corner and the other landscape architects worked in the natural flora with their design for the completed portions of the High Line. But here in Section 3, there’s still a true sense of discovery embedded: the unexpected nature of the path as we climbed around massive bushes and wooden planks, the one small evergreen tree flourishing in the midst, the palpable layering of nature over the man-made, and the undeniable importance of the railroad woven into the story of New York. Maybe it was the nature of being in a little-explored space, but with the backdrop of Hudson Yards, we felt inserted into the trajectories of history. I’ll let the photographs tell the rest.
The end of the line where the tracks disappear:
A glimpse through the brush: