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Piano Still Playing With the Whitney in MePa

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The recent news that a "maintenance and operations" building for the High Line was moving ahead at 820 Washington Street left some doubts about architect Renzo Piano's plan for a new Whitney Museum at the edge of the Meatpacking District. After all, the two were supposed to share space. But the Piano is still in tune. We dug into the High Line Maintenance and Operations Facility RFP (warning: huge PDF) from the NYC Economic Development Corporation, and the Renzo Piano Building Workshop is listed as the design consultant on the project. Phew! We don't want the High Line's new Love Shack clashing with all that fancy Italian starchitecture!

The "Detailed Site Map" shows the long and narrow M&O building will go up on the north end of the site just west of the High Line, off Washington. That corresponds with both models and renders of the Whitney MePa from the Renzo Piano Building Workshop showing a boxy structure with a ramp running alongside and a terrace on top.

The bulk of that building site was cleared last summer and the Parks Department and Friends of the High Line have positioned several trailers on the Washington Street site to serve as a temporary maintenance and operations facility until the new building is completed. That construction is set to wrap up in 2013, leading us to surmise that the rest of the Piano plan won't be rising anytime soon. But there's another little nugget in the RFP: "It is anticipated that the M&O Facility will meet a minimum LEED Silver certification." That's the silver lining around the Whitney MePa cloud.
· High Line Maintenance and Operations Facility RFP [EDC; warning: PDF]
· High Line Gives Up Waiting on the Whitney [Curbed]
· Whitney MePa coverage [Curbed]

High Line Love Shack

820 Washington Street, New York, NY