As the project lead, James Corner Field Operations led the design and construction of the High Line—a 1.5-mile-long elevated rail structure on Manhattan’s West Side. Reclaimed as an extraordinary “strolling garden in the sky,” the design is characterized by an intimate choreography of movement with alternating vistas and experiences, each leveraging the amazing “borrowed landscape” of Manhattan and the Hudson River. Distinctive paving, planting, furnishing, lighting, and social spaces create an authentic and memorable New York City experience, drawing diverse visitors from around the world and adding significant green space and ecology to an otherwise densely built city. 

Since its opening in 2009, the High Line has been lauded as an icon for urban transformation and innovative design. It is an enormously successful project, a defining feature of New York today with over 7 million visitors from around the world annually. It helped catalyze new investment in the surrounding area, with significant new development and the emergence of a new mixed-use neighborhood. The ecology of the area has been enhanced with over 100,000 plants, comprising over 1,500 species of plants, birds and insects. The project has won numerous national and international awards and accolades, including the Veronica Rudge Green Prize in Urban Design, and serves as a model for infrastructure reuse in other cities around the world.

The High Line design is a collaboration between Field Operations (Project Lead), Diller Scofidio + Renfro, and Piet Oudolf. The client is a private-public partnership between the City of New York and Friends of the High Line.