New York City’s High Line has been such a success – both as an urban renewal project and a money-making tourist attraction – that it’s spawned quite a number of Copy Cats around the world (we found 18 19, listed after the break, but no doubt there’s many more…). Many, however, are more yawn-inducing than awe-inspiring. The following four projects are notably awesome exceptions. Find out which projects made the cut, after the break…
4. “LEGO Bridge” – Wuppertal, Germany The colorful LEGO-inspired bridge, painted last fall, is part of an Urban renewal project to redevelop the city of Wuppertal’s old Railway into a 10-mile cycle path. City officials hope it will “reinvigorate the city and increase residents’ quality of life.” Unfortunately, no actual LEGOS were used in the making of this bridge; the illusion was designed by street artist Martin Heuwold of MEGX.
3. “Hofbogen” – Rotterdam, The Netherlands This plan of DOEPEL STRIJKERS to turn an old elevated train track in downtown Rotterdam into a commercial strip and elevated park, has an ingenious twist. The plan integrates city heating into the design: industrial waste heat will be used to warm the pre-war buildings along its trajectory, radically reducing their CO2 footprint.
2. “Transbay Transit Center” – San Francisco, California Once a bustling train station, the Transbay Transit Center has been in a slow demise since WW2. Even though it’s been reconstituted as a bus terminal, the facility no longer serves much purpose in the community. The proposed idea will retrofit the old, outdated building and turn it into a new high-speed rail terminus – but above the terminal is the real show-stopper. The 5.4 acre elevated park, designed by Pelli Clark Pelli Architecture, will incorporate cafes, retail areas, playgrounds, public art exhibits, an amphitheater and display gardens with climate-appropriate plants. It should be stroll-ready by 2017.
1. “The Delancey Underground” – New York City, New York As the Highline has everyone looking up, James Ramsey and Dan Barasch are asking people to start looking down. Satellite engineer turned architect, James Ramsey has developed a fiber-optic technology that will naturally light and bring life to the abandoned Williamsburg Bridge Trolley Terminal below the streets of New York City. The renderings are positively sci-fi, but if this Kickstarter Project becomes a reality, the results could be truly fantastic. More “High Line” Like Projects Around the World… Atlanta, GA, USA - The Beltline Chicago, IL, USA - The Bloomingdale Trail Detroit, MI, USA - The Dequindre Cut Greenway Helsinki, Finland – The Baana Bicycle Corridor Jersey City, NJ, USA - The Harsimus Stem Embankment Jerusalem, Israel – Railway Park Los Angeles, CA, USA – Park 101 Mexico City, Mexico – Chapultepec Project New haven, CT, USA – Farmington Canal Greenway Philadelphia, PA, USA – The Reading Viaduct Santiago, Chile – Túnel de FFCC Singapore – The Green Corridor St. Louis, MO, USA – The Trestle Toronto, Canada – The Railpath Washington, DC, USA – Dupont Underground