Diller Scofidio + Renfro’s High Line project in New York is widely recognised as one of the most successful urban design projects in the world today. Now the city of London is cashing in on the idea with a competition for a High Line for London, organised by the Landscape Institute.
A shortlist of twenty was narrowed to three highly commended projects and one winner: Fletcher Priest Architects’ ‘Pop Down’ concept for a mushroom farm under Oxford Street. The proposed site occupies a disused track which was once used to distribute mail to shops on Oxford Street and the concept suggests using sculptural glass-fibre mushrooms to light the tunnel at street level.
The Lido Line by [Y/N] Studio was awarded second place, an idea to insert a clean, safe ‘basin’ in the Regent’s Canal which would allow people to swim the ‘Lido Line’ from Little Venice to Limehouse. View [Y/N] Studio’s concept here.
The highly commended projects were:- Bridge-It by HTA - an idea to unlock inaccessible transport corridors around the existing transport network - green linear parks built over, under and beside railway lines, opening up cycling and walking networks
- Barge Walk by Erika Richmond and Peggy Pei-Chi Chi - a design to re-connect people with water via the creation of a linear park, farm and wetland on floating barges at the edge of Canary Wharf
- Bus Roots by Wynne James - an idea to make use of the many empty roof spaces of bus shelters to create raised gardens with sparrow colonies, insect hotels and miniature wildflower meadows. Each bus shelter garden would be looked after by its local community, school or street