Corner (559 West): Premier Veal, one of a dwindling
number of businesses that give the Meat Market its name, is in a city-owned
building, formerly a Fire Department high-pressure
pump house. The Dia Center for the Arts is planning
to move here from Chelsea, either replacing this building
or adapting it into a 2nd-story art gallery. The meat
business is supposed to stay on the ground floor here
81 (corner): The building formerly used by Maggio
Beef is water-damaged from being under the High Line
and is scheduled to be demolished. The current plan is
for the new building here to house the Dia Center for the
Arts, and connect the art facility to the High Line.
Here is the terminus of a disused elevated railroad that was used to transport
freight along the Westside waterfront, replacing the street-level
tracks at 10th and 11th avenues that earned those roads the
nickname "Death Avenue."
Built in 1929 at a cost of $150 million
(more than $2 billion in today's dollars), it originally
stretched from 35th Street to St. John's Park Terminal,
now the Holland Tunnel rotary. Partially torn down in
1960 and abandoned in 1980, it now ends here--at the end
of a block, unusually; through most of its length,
it runs mid-block to avoid dominating an avenue with an
In its abandonment, the High Line
became something of a natural wonder, overgrown with
weeds and even trees, accessible only to those who risk
trespassing on CSX Railroad property. Activists saved the tracks from demolition and successfully advocated for it to be turned into a park, on the model of Paris'
Promenade Plantée. Opened in 2009, the rail line was largely relandscaped using seeds from the wild plants that had colonized the tracks on their own.
There are stairs leading to the park from street level here, the beginning or end of a walk along the full length of the tracks.