Sunday, August 16, 2009

The High Line & Leslie Wolf

Above is my friend, Leslie Wolf. I took great pains to find a photograph suitable for her profile here, since she has a habit of making funny faces! She is also quite modest, which is why I have not included one of her cool photos taken with Mayor Bloomberg. Oh well...

This is the High Line --Leslie Wolf was hired as the Program Manager for the Capitol Projects Division for NYC's Dept. of Parks & Recreation She was brought on specifically to facilitate the design and construction of the High Line. Her many years of experience managing large infrastructure projects working at New York's Transit Dept helped prepare her for this high profile undertaking.

The magnitude & complexity of this project required senior staff people like herself to ensure that design elements were not only aesthetically pleasing, but functional and able to be maintained in perpetuity. The selected team for the High Line was the landscape design firm James Corner Field Operations and the architecture firm Diller Scofidio & Renfro

Thought I'd add a quick plug for the Circle Line here. Had a perfect view and it is a really fun water tour around New York City :)

Chaise lounges-- a great idea, but hard to snag one!

The High Line has received a great deal of positive publicity and weekend attendance has reached over 35,000.
When choosing the variety of plants & flowers to plant they took into account how they will look as they grow-- overgrown concept, as if left to blossom into a wild garden through "abandoned" tracks on their own.

Yummy Ice Cream!!

The juxtaposition of urban landscape with nature is very pleasing. I love the flow of growth, great views of the Hudson River and the city streets.

Here is the window to 10th Avenue which acts as a virtual theater. Newly weds were having their photos taken with the city scene as their backdrop.
Below my friend, Stephanie (left) with Suzanne Eberhardt who I had not seen in years! She is a superb interior designer. If you have a minute, check out her site ;)

We met Michael with his precious daughter, who was very friendly! Here she is looking at my business card (after chewing it a little). He is Founder of Hands on Health. Thought I'd share in case you're in need of a licensed acupuncturist/nutritionist! Anyway, the High Line is a place where locals and tourists are at their best, easy going & simply enjoying the day :)

I asked Leslie what she was most proud of after completing this portion of the High Line. She said that before she came to Parks, she had been intrigued by it's history. She feels fortunate to to be part of such a high profile project, surrounded by universal excitement that has been received so well. "The day it opened, it actually exceeded expectations and it was gratifying to be part of a team that is giving something to the city. There was a visceral, emotional connection as the 1st people to see it gave their Thanks!"

I highly recommend stopping in for lunch, dinner or a drink at the nearby restaurant ThePark It is directly across from the High Line and has it's own beautiful outdoor garden, good food & nice staff :)

Leslie and her better half ;-) Michael met Stephanie and myself at The Park and we walked through the High Line at night. It has bit of a disco feel with the cool, violet lights.

Unfortunately dogs are not allowed, but wanted to share my pic of Leslie's adorable canine, Sugi. He's the nicest little guy around!

The High Line has a fascinating history and you can read endless amounts about it on their website and blog. As Leslie said, the 10 years it took for founders of "Friends of the High Line" Joshua David and Robert Hammond to make this all happen is practically lightning speed for any city project. It is a testament to their committment & passion that the High Line got such traction. It also helped that the Bloomberg administration took office and they were savy enough to advocate to them that this would act as an economic development generator. It has surely had a positive impact on residential and retail development so far.

The most positive thing about it is the experience of walking along this lovely old railway, now filled with beauty and pleasant people :)

I am very proud of my friend, Leslie and the hard work she put into ensuring the beauty, function & safety of the design!! You would be amazed by all the details that cannot be overlooked. There is some tweaking left to do on this, section 1 and section 2 is underway!


ahoward0005 said...

What a great overview of the Highline. I am looking forward
to seeing this wonderful project
on my next visit to Allyn's in the
Fall. Leslie Wolf is an outstanding
young woman!

mzexter said...

Nice portrait of Miss Wolf.
I agree, Leslie Wolf is an outstanding young woman! Bravo!
I like the blue light picture taken at night.

kristine said...

Gorgeous! Leslie must be so proud to have worked on such an amazing project. New Yorkers will be grateful for years to come.


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