3 October 2019
for Madrid Nuevo Norte
Madrid Nuevo Norte, Madrid’s vast urban development project, is not just about what can be seen above ground. Much has been said about new housing, skyscrapers that will shape Madrid’s new skyline, green spaces or the dense network of facilities available to the new residents and existing neighbourhoods. However, the largest urban regeneration project in Europe also includes major infrastructure works that will be fundamental for the Madrid of the future. These infrastructures address the needs and challenges for urban and regional growth, including more efficient public transport or water supply for the capital.
The project will include two new intermodal transport hubs to facilitate intermodality, i.e. use of several additional means of transport on the same route to optimise transit through the city. The larger of the two will be undergrounded, next to Chamartín train station, while the other will at street level, across from La Paz Hospital.
Additionally to these infrastructures, three new Metro stops will be built along the north-south axis, one in the future business centre, and two north and south of Fuencarral. A new commuter train station will also be built at Fuencarral. Furthermore, a three-kilometre ground-level platform will be built for Bus Rapid Transit.
The Canal de Isabel II mains, through which 80% of Madrid’s drinking water flows, will be fully renewed as part of the Madrid Nuevo Norte project. More than 12 kilometres of pipes will be replaced to optimise water efficiency and enhance water management.
Madrid Nuevo Norte includes engineering works that will change the cityscape of the area, primarily to make the northern section of the city more citizen-friendly and to streamline and reduce ground-level road traffic.
To that end, particularly noteworthy is the covering of the Chamartín rail yard south of the M-30 ring road, as well as the creation of a large urban park at ground level over this deck. The result will be a vast, iconic public space in Madrid that will become a new hub of activity and leisure and a benchmark for 21st-century Madrid.
The southern section of the station, where the three railway tunnels converge towards Atocha train station, will also be covered up to its intersection with Mateo Inurria Street. Additionally, the project will cover other smaller-scale train tracks, such as the one that will extend the park, or other actions in the Las Tablas Oeste area.
Five bridges, a tunnel and a walkway will complete the new connections. Two will pass over the M-30 ring road, one of which will link Bambú and Antonio de Cabezón streets. The current bridge over Mauricio Legendre Street will be widened and renovated. The remaining three bridges will cross over the rail tracks north of the M-30 ring road, connecting Begoña, Fuencarral and Tres Olivos with Las Tablas. A pedestrian and cyclist walkway and a tunnel for road traffic will also be built.
Also noteworthy is the new underground level at Agustín de Foxá Street. This road, which will serve as an axis around which the economic activity of northern Madrid will develop, will have a unique feature: the section to the south of the M-30 ring road will have an underground level that will give priority access into the future Chamartín Intermodal Transport Hub to intercity buses, services associated with the Business District, loading and unloading of cargo and courier service, as well as access to underground car parks for offices and residential units.
In parallel, though outside the perimeter of Madrid Nuevo Norte, as part of the project, Madrid City Council will cover the final stretch of Castellana Avenue, south of the M-30 ring road, up to Manuel Caldeiro Street, at the level of Cuatro Torres and Colonia de San Cristóbal district. A 1-hectare park will be created over the central section of this major urban axis, and most of the traffic will be undergrounded.
Many of these infrastructures are located below ground. Therefore, a transparent methacrylate city model has been built to make them visible, and different lighting effects have been used to highlight the mains, tunnels and spaces that will be developed underground. The 3-metre long city model may be visited at the Madrid Nuevo Norte exhibition at 120 Castellana Avenue.