I had a whole other post planned, but I saw something so cool yesterday – and it won’t be around for long – so I had to share it with you all right away!
We (Noah, my parents and I) attended an exhibit illustrating the vision behind the world’s first underground park – called, appropriately enough, the “lowline“.
Here’s a brief description of the project and exhibit, courtesy of Untapped New York:
“…the project is hoping to convert an abandoned trolley station in to a public space, and here is the catch: it will have all the same benefits of a normal vegetated park, including the sunlight – but underground. The station in question was built in 1903, the same time the Williamsburg bridge was completed to connect the new trains that crossed the bridge and street trolleys. It was an active part of the station until street trolleys ceased to exist in 1948. The entire space has been vacant ever since. This exhibit is to showcase the ideas and designs they have for reactivating this abandoned site, and the technology they hope to pioneer to make it work.”
How awesome will that be?
The exhibit is housed in a warehouse very close to the station, on the Lower East Side. And there is a miniature “park” – complete with tree, ferns and assorted groundcovers – to illustrate how the technology will work (again, from Untapped New York):
“A parabolic sun collector attached to the roof of the building collects sun light which travels through a fiberoptic heliotube and is then dispersed by a canopy distributor.”
So there will actually be enough sunlight “captured”, to create photosynthesis and sustain plant life underground – all year round.
You do not have to be a landscape designer to get behind this – the exhibit is on display through September 27th and is well worth the trip downtown. (need more incentive? It’s right near the original Doughnut Plant AND Katz’s Delicatessen).
Admission is free, with a suggested donation of $10. We sprung for $20 and got a wheatgrass plant as a “thank you” (I’m such a sucker for a cute potted plant).
Want more still? Check out this article in The New Yorker.
Have a great weekend!