Whitin Giroux Works

Creativity. Innovation. Design Excellence.

formerly Whitin Design Works


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Friends of the Highline

New York, New York

WDW received a Jury Selection award for our entry "The Applachian Trail Abridged Version". Friends of the Highline staged an open, one-stage ideas competition challenging entrants to create compelling visions for a new, urban, public space on the Highline, 1.45 miles of existing New York City infrastructure.

The High Line, a 1.5-mile-long elevated rail structure on Manhattan's West Side, was constructed in the 1930s as one of New York City's largest investments in transportation infrastructure. In 1999, neighborhood residents founded Friends of the High Line, a non-profit organization, with the mission of converting the structure to an elevated public space, a greenway or promenade. After three years of planning, advocacy, and legal work, the City of New York took the first step in converting the High Line to a walkway through federal rails-to-trails legislation. In early 2003, Friends of the High Line launched a design competition to generate ideas. The designs created by 720 entrants from 36 countries lead to lively public debate about the ways to make the High Line as beautiful, vibrant, and original as the finest public places in the world. Because "Designing the High Line" was an "ideas" competition, its objective was to catalyze the development of truly original designs. The jury selected "winning" proposals that they felt, through the designs' ambition and originality, embodied the extraordinary range of possibilities that exists for the High Line's future.