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The Low Line

An exciting new project to open up access along the rail viaduct in Bankside is gathering pace.
Valerie Beirne
Bankside Urban Forest Manager
Peter Williams
CEO
  • Low Line Bankside : Flat Iron Square 2016
    Low Line Bankside : Flat Iron Square 2016
  • Low Line Bankside : Old Union Yard Arches 2016
    Low Line Bankside : Old Union Yard Arches 2016
  • Low Line Bankside
    Low Line Bankside
  • Low Line Bankside : Old Union Yard Arches 2016
    Low Line Bankside : Old Union Yard Arches 2016
  • Low Line Bankside - Warden's Grove rain garden (2015)
    Low Line Bankside - Warden's Grove rain garden (2015)
  • Low Line Bankside - Ewer Street Meadow (2014)
    Low Line Bankside - Ewer Street Meadow (2014)
  • Low Line Bankside - Verdant Viaduct (2013)
    Low Line Bankside - Verdant Viaduct (2013)
  • Low Line Bankside - pop up space (2010)
    Low Line Bankside - pop-up space (2010)
  • Low Line Bankside
    Low Line Bankside
  • Low Line Bankside - Nestworks (51% Architects) 2010
    Low Line Bankside - Nestworks (51% Architects) 2010
Key Partners: 
Network Rail, Bankside Neighbourhood Forum, Southwark Council,

The Low Line, evoking Manhattan’s High Line, focuses on the rail arches that have been part of Bankside for over 150 years.  A project conceived by a local resident, it aims to transform the public realm by opening up the mostly car-free walkway that runs along the base of the Victorian viaducts.

At the heart of the project is the regeneration of the area, unlocking the economic potential of the railway arches as flourishing business spaces that support a mix of small and medium size businesses in the heart of Bankside.

Over the decades, the Low Line route has become blocked through the planned and unplanned development of walls, fences and buildings.  The Low Line project sets out to restore this important link across Bankside by encouraging commercial development including retail, culture, and food and drink opportunities, helping to open new connections along the route and reinforce Bankside’s unique and special character.

Both the recently launched Union Yard Arches and Flat Iron Square projects continue the long tradition of Bankside as a cultural destination in the capital. It will open up pedestrian footfall along previously inaccessible stretches of the neighbourhood, it will give small, independent businesses the opportunity to thrive in a burgeoning neighbourhood, and cement the area as a cultural hub in south London.

Coordinated by Better Bankside, the Low Line brings together a range of stakeholders including Network Rail, Southwark Council and the Bankside Neighbourhood Forum, and is embedded in emerging planning policy in Southwark.

Download a detailed analysis of the Low Line (September 2015)

Download a summary overview of the Low Line (September 2015)

Download a background document about the Low Line (2014)

View our entry to Designing the Urban Commons 2015 Low Line - Designing the Urban Commons

Oct 25 2016