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“.

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.”

the lowline

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.

the lowline

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).

the lowline

There’s a wealth of information on the lowline’s web site, including this inspired video narrated by the project’s creators:

Want more still? Check out this article in The New Yorker.

the lowline

Have a great weekend!


  1. Marcy Newman on September 28, 2012 at 6:03 pm

    F’n COOL! excuse the lang. I’m in Vanc BC-just read about it- what stage is it at? How long will it take to fully finish? You guys are brilliant-just love this whole idea. marcy

    • sherisilver on September 28, 2012 at 7:58 pm

      Right? It hasn’t even been fully funded yet, so it’s a ways away – I can’t wait to see it!

  2. lucent imagery on January 8, 2013 at 11:19 pm

    Ahhhhhhhhh. Sorry to be so excited, but I seriously love all this stuff. I am a huge fan of urban greenery and parks and anything like this just leaves me so excited for the future of cities. I’m involved in things here in Australia that are about urban issues and starting great things like this. I’ll be spreading the word around.

    • sherisilver on January 9, 2013 at 10:21 am

      Thanks again! I feel just the same. This one in particular I am SO excited about!!

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