Metro de Madrid gathers together the top 60 underground systems in the world to celebrate its centenary
Metro de Madrid will host the 96th Metropolitan Railways Assembly of the UITP - the International Association of Public Transport - at a meeting to be held in Madrid on 17 and 18 October, at which the 60 main underground systems in the world will participate. This year’s edition has been organised as a special tribute to the Madrid underground on its centenary.
The public enterprise of the Regional Government of Madrid will host this annual meeting following on from last year’s meeting in Los Angeles, at which the candidature of Madrid received unanimous support. This assembly, which will be attended by the Regional Councillor for Transport, Mobility and Infrastructure of the Regional Government of Madrid and Chairman of Metro de Madrid, Ángel Garrido, will study developments by the main railway transport companies in terms of new technologies, digitalisation, artificial intelligence and enhanced mobility, with the aim of contributing to decongesting large cities and introducing improvements in transport systems.
An important part of the debate will focus on analysing the challenges and current strategy of the ‘city of the future’. In addition, there will be sessions on the benefits of the underground, the digital metro and work presentations from the underground technical sub-committees of the UITP, as well as a technical visit.
THE METRO OF THE FUTURE
Over these two days, Metro de Madrid will outline its main initiatives to develop the so-called ‘metro of the future’. In recent decades, and to adapt to new technological challenges, the Madrid underground has undertaken an ambitious modernisation programme with two outstanding digital milestones: first, the implementation of the Command Post and the Operations Centre for the Maintenance and Monitoring of Facilities and Telecommunications, together with the Automatic Train Operation (ATO) system, and second, the development of the Station 4.0, the RailNet communications system and better customer information.
As part of the commitment to the digital transformation, Metro de Madrid has a Station 4.0 Technology Centre, an example of what the underground will look like in the coming years: a digitalised and innovative environment. Specifically, the public enterprise will outline at the UITP meeting its global plan for digital transformation to maintain high quality standards, offer new services demanded by customers and efficiently and effectively manage the whole network in line with the new times.
At present, the public enterprise of the Regional Government of Madrid is also working on a third technological leap, with inroads on the digital train, connected with workers and customers, and provided with systems for predictive maintenance and shorter incident resolution times. Based on Industry 4.0, this digital transformation will involve both stations and control centres and will also mean new communications networks.
The UITP was founded in 1885 and works in a coordinated network that brings together all the leading players in the field of mobility, with channels for new business opportunities and the exchange of knowledge and information, for the promotion of public transport and sustainable mobility, whilst also fostering innovation.
This organisation has sought to make its 96th assembly a tribute to the centenary of Metro de Madrid, a transport system that radically changed the way in which citizens moved around the city 100 years ago. Nowadays, the underground has exceeded its metropolitan limits to become a regional transport system (it reaches 12 municipalities in the Region of Madrid), that continues to grow, although it has maintained its essence as a fast, comfortable and safe means of transport.
Last year, Metro de Madrid made 657.2 million journeys to its 302 stations on its 294 kilometres of track. The company has 7,000 employees and an annual budget of 1 billion euros, compared with 8 million pesetas that it cost to start up in 1919.