The Peckham Coal Line

From green bridges to fungal tunnels, everyone wants to do a High Line. New York's smart use of an disused elevated railway line that runs through its old meatpacking district is an urban design phenomenon, attracting millions and offering a unique experience in a crowded city.

The Peckham Coal Line is a new project, which comes closer in spirit to the High Line than any other project so-far imagined for London. The team behind it wants to create a 1km park and cycle route between Queens Road and Rye Lane. They say:

By using the disused Rickett coal sidings, which were decommissioned in the 1950’s, the elevated urban park would cut through the heavily built up ex-industrial area providing a precious green open space; a place to enjoy nature, amble, cycle, relax or play.

Users would discover local history in the atmospheric shadow of grand old Victorian arches and factories such as the Bussey building with park views towards the city skyscrapers and beyond helping contextualise Peckham geographically and historically, in a space that amplifies the seasons whilst linking our communities.

The high-line ties in with Peckham Vision's proposal for a low-line green path alongside the Bussey Building. Together the two green paths would tie into the transformed area around the planned new square in front of Peckham Rye station.

The proposal also has wider network potential; by linking two parts of the national cycle network it would be possible to create an almost continuous green route stretching from Brixton to Rotherhithe with the future potential to reach Canary Wharf.

It's a beautiful idea, still in its infancy - uncosted and undesigned - but with amazing potential. With successful precedents, an increasingly confident local neighbourhood and a relatively simple plan, there's no reason why it couldn't happen.

Right now, they're looking for support and design input, so click here for more details.