City gets the process rolling to control High Line’s last leg

By Albert Amateau

The city last week took the first step in acquiring the northern third of the High Line that loops around the Hudson Yards, the final section of the railroad viaduct that will be converted into an elevated city park.

Certification of the plan by the Depart-

ment of City Planning on Jan. 27 began the seven-month uniform land use review procedure, or ULURP, that will allow the city to begin negotiations with CSX, the railroad that still owns the last half-mile of the High Line north of W. 30th Sts.

“City acquisition of this half-mile section has long been our most pressing goal at the rail yards,” said Joshua David, co-founder of Friends of the High Line, the nonprofit organization that administers the park, currently under construction, in conjunction with the Department of Parks and Recreation.

The city already owns the southern two-thirds of the High Line that runs north along Washington St. and 10th Ave., between Gansevoort and 30th St.

The High Line park’s first section opened to public acclaim last year between Gansevoort and W. 20th Sts. The middle section of the elevated rail line between 20th and 30th Sts. is currently under construction for park use.

The fate of the northern section, still owned by CSX, which loops around the rail yards from 30th St. to 12th Ave. and north to 34th St. at 11th Ave., was decided last year when The Related Companies, the developer of the rail yards designated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, agreed to preserve the structure.

“We are extremely pleased that the city is taking this important first step toward ownership of the High Line’s Hudson Yards section,” said John Alschuler, chairperson of Friends of the High Line. “Through continued community advocacy and collaboration with the city, the M.T.A. and The Related Companies, we are confident that this historic structure will be transformed into a great public space to be treasured by generations to come,” Alschuler said.