Exploding Vision

D. Bailes

Last time I was in New York I visited the High Line.  If you haven’t been there, it’s a space transformed, now an elevated  walkway/garden/observation post, that transports you to a new vision of the city.  It’s a fully realized shift in view as it sets you apart from the every day urban street experience.  People visit it from all over the world.  And it’s quiet presence has served as a catalyst for any number of architectural innovations.  

HL23 Website
D. Bailes

Take, for example, HL23 by Neil Denari.  Here’s how he puts it:  “We wanted to make new architecture that honors the old in certain ways, but that stands as an elevated world, integrated with the High Line in a new way.”  Here’s what he’s talking about:

Renderings from HL23 Website
Michael Falco for NYT

Limited to a small footprint, HL23 grows wide as it grows tall.  And it shows us how to use space differently, covering the steel framing with glass front and back, bowing and curving out. The NYT calls it “sleek and muscular as an Italian sports car.”  I can only imagine how captivating your vision of New York would be if you were fortunate to observe the city from within its calmly elegant spaces.  


Michael Falco for NYT

And yes, HL23 was not designed to quietly blend into the neighborhood. Rather, it calls out for our attention.  And it does play well off the ever-changing  High Line.  I think it’s a great example of how the High Line serves as a catalyst for a bolder vision.  
If you want more, John Hill blogs about architecture on his Archidose site and has some great photos showing the High Line and it’s surrounds.  His site is a rich experience and you might want to spend some time exploring his take on architecture and design.

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About Dan Bailes

As a writer and storyteller I explore the creative process and how we understand ourselves and our place in the world. For my blog, The Vision Thing, I write on creativity, innovation and vision – with a focus on pathfinders and the inspirational moment. I also consult and write for clients, play drums in a blues band, practice yoga and enjoy photography.
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