Seoul to Debut Its Own High Line

Instead of a disused rail line, Seoul will repurpose one of its many old overpasses. The goal is to introduce green space and build up connective pedestrian infrastructure.
May 18, 2017, 12pm PDT | Philip Rojc | @PhilipRojc
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Vincent St. Thomas

This week, the South Korean capital will open Seoullo 7017, a High Line-evoking pedestrian park built on a mile of elevated highway. Anna Fifield writes: "After it emerged from the Korean War, Seoul was rebuilt almost in the blink of an eye as South Korea began its transformation into an economic powerhouse. Starting in the 1960s, city planners ordered the construction of dozens of elevated highways to keep traffic flowing through the capital."

Previously scheduled for demolition, the overpass-turned-park "will link the Namdaemun market, a ramshackle tourist hot spot that has been in decline for a decade, with a neglected neighborhood on the western side of the railroad tracks that run into Seoul Station."

According to Kwon Wan-taek, a Seoul official leading the project, Seoullo will introduce much-needed green space for the city's pedestrians. "Unlike the High Line, built on an old rail line on Manhattan's Lower West Side, the walkway will connect with buildings — there are already bridges into an office tower and a hotel — and will have cafes and performance areas."
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Published on Sunday, May 14, 2017 in The Washington Post
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