A disused section of old railway track could become another Highline for London, if proposals by Hammersmith Council are carried out. If built, then it could join the Peckham Coal Line and the Camden Highline in creating pocket parks by reusing old railway infrastructure.

The section of track that’s being suggested runs alongside the existing tube lines into Hammersmith, and used to carry trains up towards Shepherds Bush, but closed just over a hundred years ago.

To gauge interest, a design competition has opened to the general public organised by local architect group West London Link and Hammersmith BID. Entries will be exhibited as part of the London Festival of Architecture 2019 at Kings Mall shopping centre, between 22nd-30th June.

The judging panel is looking for both original ideas without limits and interesting schemes that are practical. For this reason, they are offering two sets of prize money to encourage a variety of ideas that could be considered, from the fanciful to the deliverable.

Solutions they are looking for will provide Hammersmith with a special attraction that will draw people in on its own right and give the town centre something special and unique, over and above what other town centres can offer.

Access will be a major challenge as the site is hard to reach, with active railway lines (District & Piccadilly) running alongside the Highline site. Designs that have considered this carefully will be favourably judged.

The other constraint is that at the moment, the disused railway has two very large holes in it – although those would be relatively easy to fill in again, and the gap in the Highline in the arches could well be filled in to become storage space for the essential coffee bar that’ll be on top.

Access and connectivity should be to the town centre, shopping centre and riverside, as well as creating an accessible destination for all. Kings Mall could be a potential access point, as there are two existing pedestrian bridges over the railway which could connect the shopping centre to the Highline, and to King Street beyond.

The Hammersmith Highline Competition is open to all members of the public. A background in design or built environment professions is not essential. There will also be a separate competition with entries from local primary schools.

There will be two prizes of £5,000 each.

Expression of Interest

Please email Livia Caruso stating your name and whether you are able to make the site visit date on Wednesday 17th April. No further information is required at this point. You will then receive the competition brief.

There is no obligation to proceed with an entry following the expression of interest. There is no entry fee.


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  1. Ken says:

    The Highline is New York’s answer to London’s Parkland Walk. For some reason, London’s bloggers get into an ecstatic lather at the mere mention of the Highline, and routinely forget about the longer, greener, two-decades-older Parkland Walk.

  2. Dave says:

    As much as I love to see urban innovations like these – New York (becoming a bit of a victim of it’s own success) and Paris, both have that unique point of being ‘fairly quiet’. Other cities are also contemplating their own ‘highlines’. Kinda – ‘want your city to have some kudos’ – get a highline!
    I have walked the Parkland in London and it’s quiet; dog walkers, joggers, cyclists – bit of a pain after rain, as no tarmac or hard surfaces and maybe a small investment with say cycle hire and coffee pop-up would add to it, although there’s a good cafe in Finsbury Park. But it’s quiet.
    Visit any local park and once you get more than 100 metres away from a road – tranquil, that’s why we like them.
    As much as I like the idea for the Coal Line, Camden Highline and now the Hammersmith Highline I think the problem is they are all next to very busy and noisy rail lines.
    For tranquility I won’t be visiting anytime soon.

  3. Rog Laker says:

    Dave, it’s OK to NOT routinely add an apostrophe at the end of every word ending with an ‘s’! Only a matter of time before we see the first “her’s”?
    End apostrophe abuse now!

  4. Michael says:

    Wow, that sounds like the perfect location for…… a railway line

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