I came across information about the High Line from that "How About We..." website where someone suggested it as a date. I looked it up because I was not familiar with this, and realized it was in fact something I wanted to see. The High Line was built in the 1930's and used through 1980 as a way to more safely transport freight to the industrial part of Manhattan. To do this, it was created 30 feet above the street in hopes to lessen the accidents on the street level and allow the trains to pull right into the buildings to be unloaded. The new elevated train tracks were 13 miles long, running from 34th street to Spring Street.
Two people got together in 1999 to form the "Friends of the High Line" which advocated using the tracks as public space. Their wish was granted, and in June 2009 the first phase of the park was open to the public, and hopefully in 2011 the second phase from 20 - 30th streets will be open to the public.
The high line walk was actually very relaxing. The concrete pathway curves with plants everywhere, so it is not just a boring straight walk. Benches and chairs are spread out throughout the path and some benches even have wheels on them to be moved along part of the train track, allowing them to be moved further or closer to a neighboring chair. There is also one area that has stadium seating that over looks the street below.
Unfortunately, even though I planned this visit two weeks ago, I forgot my camera. I ended up just taking a few pictures from my phone that does not have good resolution. I had a nice, relaxing evening slowly strolling the park and sitting on the benches, catching up with SI.
If you are ever in the NYC area, and are in the Chelsea Neighborhood, climb up the stairs to enter this park and just detour the busy streets below. It is currently a short walk, after phase two is complete, it will be 1 1/2 miles long. For more information check out their website The High Line.