Elevated Thinking: The High Line in New York City

(Rochester, New York) – Great Museums® Television’s newest documentary, Elevated Thinking: The High Line in New York City, airs on WXXI-TV June 20, 2014 at 10 p.m. Narrated by Academy Award®-winning actress Susan Sarandon, the hour-long HD film showcases one of the world’s most unusual and unlikely public parks. Opened in 2009, the High Line is now one of the world’s top tourist destinations, with nearly 5 million visitors annually.

The mile-and-half-long High Line is like a living museum of plants - a tour de force of public landscaping - carefully curated atop an abandoned elevated railroad that was saved from the wrecking ball. Like the old freight line it replaced, the new park rises above busy streets and runs in one side of buildings and out the other, as it winds its way from the historic Meatpacking District through Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen to Hudson Yards.

The free park also serves as a neighborhood gathering space, a venue for contemporary art and dance, a social and educational center for activities of all kinds, a green space for local children to play, and a vantage point for seeing the city on display.

“The whole experience is magical. It’s slightly elevated, but not too high, so it protects you from the street, yet you feel the energy of the street,” says fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, whose global fashion house is headquartered in an old warehouse in the Meatpacking District, now New York’s hippest fashion district. “And, it is parallel to the river. That adds yet another sense of air and space and freedom and all the things we like.” Von Furstenberg and her husband IAC Chairman Barry Diller were the first major philanthropists to champion the idea of converting the elevated railroad into a “park in the sky.”

Photo caption: The High Line opens vistas across broad avenues and busy cross streets. Here, park visitors get an elevated view of midday traffic in Chelsea.
Credit: Echo Pictures



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