News / Architecture

A look inside the world’s first underground park, the Lowline


Over the weekend a test lab for the world’s first underground park opened its doors to visitors in New York. Housed in the former Essex Street Market building in Manhattan, it is the first step toward making former NASA engineer James Ramsey’s idea for the Lowline a reality. His plans for the Lowline propose transforming a disused trolley terminal into a subterranean park using innovative solar technology.

The test lab was built with $225,000 raised on Kickstarter and sees 60 species of plants growing in conditions that simulate the underground space. It is only a fifth of the size of the trolley terminal site, which will use a system of pipes to funnel natural light, and magnify it to 30 times the intensity of regular sunlight.

Architecture and design platform The Spaces has created a short film touring the newly-opened Lowline lab, which will be free and open to the public for the next five months.