Metro de Madrid will begin renovation works on line 4 as from 13 January

Train
An alternative bus service will be offered between Pinar de Chamartín and Avenida de América. The budget for the works amounts to more than 47 million euros, which are scheduled to take approximately 8 weeks. The aim is to increase the capacity and reliability of operations on the line. Four stations will also be modernised: Esperanza, Prosperidad, Arturo Soria and Alfonso XIII

Metro de Madrid will begin works on the comprehensive renovation of line 4 as from 13 January, which will remain closed for approximately eight weeks. In order to minimise disruptions to passengers, a free alternative bus service will be offered between Pinar de Chamartín and Avenida de América and increased services will be offered on existing bus routes.

These works, with a budget of more than 47 million euros, seek to increase the capacity and reliability of operations on the line through a set of actions to renew and standardise railway signalling and the electrification of the overhead line, and the installation of a complete rigid catenary system. This system will allow the number of incidents to be reduced and lower the consequent maintenance costs.

These works aim to completely replace the tramway catenary with a rigid catenary, an electricity transmission system to trains that offers greater reliability, availability and less need for maintenance. The new system is prepared to function both at 1,500 volts and at the 600 used at present, which will increase the capacity of trains on this line in the future and reduce energy losses.

The works, in addition to those already being carried out to renew the railway signalling and which seek to reduce train travel times on the line, thus homogenise the different existing systems which will enhance the capacity for transport, safety and make maintenance more efficient.

In order for the whole renovation of the signalling to become effective, it is also necessary to implement actions on a total of 105 train units of the 3,000 model and 42 units of the 2,000 model, which require the download of the new software map, an action that can be completed almost instantly.

The works to modify the set of interlocks (track circuits, beacons, protection and driving systems, signals and all types of equipment necessary to implement the new system) began back in October 2018.

In addition, four stations will be modernised: Esperanza, Prosperidad, Arturo Soria and Alfonso XIII, which will coincide with the closure of line 4, although these works are independent. The aim is to replace the cladding, obsolete installations and technology on the platforms and access ways by other more modern materials and equipment adapted to current regulations, which will facilitate maintenance tasks and improve the functionality of the installations. In addition, the drainage and sanitations system will be extended at stations with new waterproofing systems, new electricity conduits will be installed and new furniture fitted. In addition to these works on stations, the roof at Avenida de América station will be waterproofed.

The works on line 4 also provide for the removal of asbestos from installations in tunnels and stations.

BACKGROUND

The works began on line 4 in January 2018 to introduce the TETRA radiotelephony communications system, which was completed in October 2018, after the placement of aerials, alterations to communications room equipment, the installation of GPS cables and the corresponding tests.

That same month, the railway signalling work began and then, in May 2019, the preliminary works on the catenary. The Modernisation Programme for line 4 is thus already underway.

LINE 4

The current line 4 was inaugurated in 1932 as a branch of line 2 between Goya and Diego de León stations. It was not until 23 March 1944 that it became a line in its own right after opening the section between Argüelles and Goya stations, although the branch continued to be operated independently. This was definitively incorporated to the line in 1958, which allowed it to be extended between Diego de León and Alfonso XIII stations, a stretch inaugurated on 26 March 1973.

On 5 May 1979, a new extension was opened through to Esperanza station. It was not until 1998 that the line extended to Parque de Santa María station, and then the last section was inaugurated on 11 April 2007, which extended to Pinar de Chamartín station.

This staggered growth is what has led to the use of different electrification systems (railway overhead contact lines, tramway, conventional catenary, rigid catenary), as well as different generations of railway signalling systems which it was necessary to renovate and make uniform.