Ignacio Aguado announces incorporation of more than 300 train drivers in 2020
The Regional Government of Madrid celebrates 100 years of the existence of Metro de Madrid with a new exhibition based on its origins entitled “The Mark of Metro’, in which visitors can see the history of the underground and its relationship to the city of Madrid. During its inauguration, the Regional Vice-President and Councillor for Sport, Transparency and Spokesperson, Ignacio Aguado, called for visitors to look with “recognition and gratitude” at the last 100 years and pointed out that the work of the regional government is to look for new developments to the system. On this point, the Regional Vice-President announced the hiring of more than 300 new train drivers in 2020, “an historic milestone in the history of Metro de Madrid”, which seeks, in the words of Ignacio Aguado, to preserve “the most valuable asset” of the people of Madrid – “their time”. This initiative “will help provide a quality service and significantly reduce waiting times on platforms for the people of Madrid”, he explained.
The Regional Vice-President was commissioned with inaugurating the ABC Museum, together with the Regional Councillor for Transport, Mobility and Infrastructures of the Regional Government of Madrid and Chairman of Metro, Ángel Garrido, to showcase the ambitious research project entitled ‘The Mark of Metro’, which primarily seeks to recover the historical heritage of the underground, following the trail that this important infrastructure has left in the city. The exhibition is full of the work and documents at the service of the Metro Historical Heritage, together with a selection of photos from the archives of the daily newspaper ABC.
In reference to the exhibition, Ignacio Aguado highlighted that this gives “a profound view of the origins of our underground, in those years in which a saturated city found a solution in Metro de Madrid”. The Regional Vice-President stressed that when Metro appeared in the lives of the people of Madrid, it did so with just one railway line, but now, 100 years on, it has 12 lines and a branch line, 302 stations and 2.3 million passengers each day. “This progress can only be understood as a result of excellence in the service provided and of an intangible, but equally valid, factor: the ties of affection of the people of Madrid for their underground system”, he remarked.
THE METRO OF THE NEXT 100 YEARS
“Leave a mark, a legacy and transcend are all terms that speak of an underground system which, in appearance at least, is only a means of public transport, but which has come to be much more than this. At the start of the 20th Century, the shock for these first passengers must be like travelling to another galaxy today”, said Ángel Garrido.
The display will be open to the public from Thursday, 17 October until 8 December, from 12:00 to 20:00 between Tuesday and Saturday and from 10:00 to 14:00 on Sunday. The display traces an historical journey from the early years of the 20th Century, with the concession to the Alfonso XIII Metropolitan Company, through to 1936. It is structured in three sections: Antonio Palacios, the architect of Metro; the city and its underground; and historical photos of the underground from the ABC archives.
‘The Mark of Metro’ highlights the figure of Antonio Palacios and the mark he left on Madrid and its underground, thanks to unprecedented work on the first stations on lines 1 and 2. In 1917, Antonio Palacios was appointed as the official architect of Metro de Madrid, a post he held until his death in 1945, one year after having completed the initial design of the metropolitan network. He was an architect with a growing reputation thanks to the construction of the Communications Palace which was about to be finalised at that time.
Subsequently, he would design the most emblematic works of modern Madrid which were being created in the new centre, formed by the streets of Gran Vía and Alcalá: the Palazuelo House (1919-1921), the Matesanz House (1919-1923), the Círculo de Bellas Artes (1919-1926), Hotel Avenida (1921-1924) and the Mercantile and Industrial Bank (1935-1943), among others.
THE CITY AND METRO
‘The Mark of Metro’ also analyses the changes that have taken place in the urban image of Madrid with the arrival of the underground. Madrid was transformed forever with the appearance of an underground city that began to develop under our feet. Metro is principally developed underground, with tunnels where the trains travel, platforms, passageways and entrance halls for passengers.
A special part of the exhibition is given over to the urban growth that Madrid and Metro enjoyed side-by-side over these last 100 years. Visitors can clearly see the development of the inaugural stretch between Cuatro Caminos and Sol on line 1; the extension of the Alcalá-Arenal axis and Ventas-Ópera on line 2; and the expansion of the city associated with the stretch between Sol and Embajadores on line 3.
The underground entrances and the templates designed by Antonio Palacios made the presence of the underground visible in the city, allowing travellers to locate the stations and thus turning them into key references areas to understand and cover the complex urban network of a cosmopolitan city like Madrid.
The exhibition is complemented by the display of two models: the Gran Vía lift from 2001 and a printed 3D replica of the first train from 1919.
Lastly, ‘The Mark of Metro’ includes three multimedia spaces with infographs of 3D drawings of classic trains, virtual recreations through hyperreal high definition images of the underground back then and videos that dynamically show the transformation of the city and Metro in that period.