Rail Yards Press Flurry

Yesterday’s MTA Rail Yards bid release sent the real-estate beat reeling with grand schemes and otherworldly renderings for Manhattan’s largest development site.

Read our new Rail Yards Blog for more.

MTA Makes West Side Rail Yards Bids Public


Yesterday, the MTA revealed to the public the five developer bids for the West Side Rail Yards. There will be a 2-week period of public input, and then a committee of representatives from the MTA and the Hudson Yards Development Corporation will make a recommendation to the MTA’s Board.

The northern 1/3 of the High Line runs through the Rail Yards site. Three of the five development proposals (Brookfield Properties, The Related Companies, and Extell Development Corporation) preserve it fully.

Tishman Speyer preserves part of the High Line but demolishes the spur over Tenth Avenue and part of the section along 30th Street.

Vornado Realty Trust and the Durst Organization tears down most of the High Line at the Rail Yards, replacing it with a futuristic aerial walkway called the “skyline”.

No matter which Rail Yards proposal is selected by the MTA, these plans will certainly change later in the process, so even the proposals calling for full preservation of the High Line could end up partially demolishing it. And as the New York Sun points out, the MTA has not released any of the financials.

Read FHL’s E-Newsletter about the public release.

And CB4 has some background on the Rail Yards site.

High Line Video

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More video after the jump.

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It’s One El of a Park

The New York Post ran a two-page spread on the High Line yesterday. The feature focused on the High Line’s impact on the neighborhood:

“The High Line’s presence, with its cutting-edge landscape design, alongside a bevy of art galleries has also attracted some of the world’s most recognized architects, turning the neighborhood into an enclave of state-of-the-art building design dubbed ‘Architects Row.’

Design for Section 1 (Gansevoort to 20th Street), was also covered, including the first public view of a design feature called the Tenth Avenue Square:

10th avenue square

“Park visitors will be able to descend into the structure, into what will be called the 10th Avenue Square, and look out, giving them a sense of being suspended over the avenue near 17th Street.”

Last, the article touched on the uncertain future of the High Line at the West Side Rail Yards, which reporter Tom Topousis has reported on before.


It’s One El of a Park

Decks, Marshes and Trees Set for High Line

A ‘rail’ Effort to Preserve the Past

Planking is Installed


Another milestone in Landscape Construction this week: Starting at the High Line’s Southern end at Gansevoort Street, contractors have begun to install the park’s planking system. These twelve-foot long smooth concrete planks will taper at the end, allowing plants to push up between them (and evoking the way the plants grew up around the rails when the High Line went wild.)

This will create an integrated system unlike the traditional park environment with planting boxes, raised beds and guard rails seperating people from planting areas.

Visible under the new planks is the High Line’s drainage system, which is also part of Landscape Construction.

Cutting the Hole for Access at Gansevoort Street

Gansevoort access from below Gans accessGans access

Gansevoort access from above

This week, construction crews cut away two of the central beams on the High Line structure to make way for an access point at Gansevoort Street. The stairs will rise from street level, bringing the visitor in contact with the heavy steel girders and hand-driven rivets of the structure itself.

The steel beams that were removed are 40 feet long and seven feet wide, and each weigh about 17 tons.

Construction of access points is part of the final phase of work on Section 1 of the High Line. This scope of work also includes waterproofing, installation of pathways, seating, lighting and planting areas.

Design rendering of the Gansevoort access point after the jump.

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