The dramatic transformation of the High Line in Manhattan has been so successful that it has influenced other urban communities to re-examine what they’re doing with their unused railroads. Just across the East River, however, Queens is aiming to transform a stretch of train track, that has been abandoned for 50 years, into what advocates are calling the QueensWay. More from the New York Times:
Now, the three-and-a-half-mile stretch of rusty train track in central Queens is being reconceived as the “QueensWay,” a would-be linear park for walkers and bicyclists in an area desperate for more parkland and, with the potential for art installations, performances and adjacent restaurants, a draw for tourists interested in sampling the famously diverse borough.
Unlike the High Line, the QueensWay would welcome bicycles. While the trestles are relatively narrow, long stretches are wide enough — up to 25 feet — to accommodate walkers and bicyclists. New bike paths could connect the park to Flushing Meadows-Corona Park to the north, as well as an existing bikeway in Jamaica Bay to the south. About 250,000 residents live within a mile of the proposed park, and its backers see all kinds of ancillary benefits, from health to traffic.