Under Ground Parks
30th November 2016
WITH wide open green spaces disappearing due to the urban sprawl, one city is looking to drastic measures to give residents a place to escape the hustle and bustle – by going underground.
Plans are afoot to create the first underground park below the streets of Manhattan, funnily enough right near to Essex Street.
The Williamsburg Bridge Trolley Terminal opened in 1908, but has been unused since 1948 when the tram service was discontinued.
But the one-acre space retains some incredible features, like remnant cobblestones, crisscrossing rail tracks and 20ft vaulted ceilings.
Now, you’re thinking, ‘A dark and dusty old tram station doesn’t sound like the ideal getaway’. But that’s where the science comes in.
The boffins behind the scheme have come up with remote skylights, clever little devices that can channel natural sunlight from the surface and down through fibre optics and reflectors that will allow trees and grass to grow underground.
And not only does it mean fauna will flourish, but lighting won’t be needed during the day as the natural sunlight will be fed through.
Named the Lowline, the team behind it have already created a prototype of the technology in part of the space to prove it works.
It prompted a warm reaction from local residents, politicians and authorities. Now the planning and negotiation phase is continuing and the date pencilled in for opening in 2018.
Such a clever way of maximising the use of natural light to create something spectacular.