New York City’s High Line

It’ll rival the original in New York City.

The greater London area certainly has its share of abandoned railroad tracks—vestiges of the Industrial Revolution and the intermodal transportation industry it spawned.

Many of these tracks have sat dormant for years. One, however, located in the northwest section of the city near the London Zoo and the popular (and often super-crowded) Regent’s Canal towpath, soon may get new life—as a public park. 

Earlier this month, Camden Town Unlimited, the business improvement district for Camden Town, unveiled plans to work with a local rail company turn a 0.8-mile section between Kentish Town Road and Camley Street into an elevated urban park with gardens, water features, and lanes for pedestrians and cyclists alike. 

According to various news reports (including a short-but-sweet piece in Time Out London) the resulting public space would rival New York City’s High Line in awesomeness and architectural design.

Development of the project hinges on Camden Town’s cooperation with Network Rail, the railroad company that currently owns the tracks. A recent story in the Kentishtowner, a local weekly and blog, indicates that officials with Camden Town Unlimited have initiated discussions with the rail company to see if the concept can become reality. 

The Kentishtowner article notes that the proposed Camden High Line seeks to connect two of London’s most talked-about redevelopment zones. 

On the west end, access likely would be in Camden Gardens, opposite the Hawkey Wharf development. On the east end, the trail would connect to Granary Square and a number of shopping developments that are sprouting nearby.

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To be clear, the project is still in its infancy; there has been no formal go-ahead and no timetable for any work. Still, Camden Town Unlimited set up a website where people can pledge support. 

We will monitor the story as the prospect of this epic park progresses.

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