The residents of Vallecas, on the warpath: imminent works on Metro Line 1 and still without an alternative transport plan

A woman walks next to the Puente de Vallecas metro, in Madrid (Eduardo Parra / Europa Press)

The Community of Madrid has approved the remodeling works for Metro Line 1, which will begin on June 1 and will last for four months. So far, however, still there is no alternative transport planaccording to what the residents of the neighborhood are denouncing, who are asking for the stoppage of the works until there are alternative routes, since these works will affect 500,000 people.

Specifically, the person in charge of demanding this request has been the Regional Federation of Neighborhood Associations of Madrid (FRAVM), who are demanding a bus plan (usual in this type of case), although they have asked that their route avoid going through the Avenida de la Albufera, which is the section that the metro runs through. The group has claimed that this area is usually collapsed daily and advocates avoiding it.

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Thus, they have proposed that other routes be established that connect with Conde de Casal, Méndez Álvaro, Asamblea de Madrid-Entrevías and Metro line 9 in Moratalaz and Vicálvaro. They have also asked to reinforce the current ETM lines that already circulate through the Vallecas neighborhood and the C2 and C7 commuter lines.

From the Madrid Ministry of Transport they assure that “there is still no closing date, but there will always be a bus service”. However, the plan has not yet materialized.

The remodeling of a part of Metro Line 1, approved by the Government of Isabel Díaz Ayuso, will affect a total of 18 stations located in the districts of Villa and Puente de Vallecas, Retiro and a part of the Center. This stoppage will last four months, as they have advanced from the Puerta del Sol.

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From FRAVM they criticize that both the regional government led by Isabel Díaz Ayuso and the municipal government led by José Luis Martínez-Almeida to remain silent in the absence of alternatives. An issue that they attribute to the time of year in which the formations live, the electoral campaign.

A man leaves the Puente de Vallecas metro (Eduardo Parra / Europa Press)
A man leaves the Puente de Vallecas metro (Eduardo Parra / Europa Press)

The neighborhood group has also highlighted that these works will affect more than 500,000 people, since the stoppage covers two districts of the Vallecas neighborhood. Some neighbors who will have to find a way to supply transportation by metro for four months.

What they also do not understand is that the most modern stations of Line 1 are going to be closed, such as Valdecarros, Las Suertes and La Gavia, who are only 16 years old. In this sense, the FRAVM has requested a meeting with the Department of Transport and Infrastructure of the Community of Madrid, with the Regional Transport Council and with Metro to discuss all these issues, although up to now there has been no meeting with any of them.

In the year 2016, Line 1 of the Metro was reformed by the then Government of the Community of Madrid led by Cristina Cifuentes in cooperation with the former Madrid mayor Manuela Carmena. At that time, the works also lasted approximately four months, from May 21 to September 30.

Although at that time alternative bus services were made available to travelers, but this did not prevent large crowds from forming in transport.

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