A Guidepost Report
By the time it reopens, the eight-month makeover of the centenary Gran Via subway station will have made it worthy of celebrating its 100th anniversary with – as the old song goes – rockets, bells and poetry! For one thing, it will be a subway station with a heart, friendly to those whose mobility has been impaired. New lifts and escalators will have been installed and old ones modernized with the needs of the disabled very much in mind.
Moreover, the station will have an easy access to the Cercanias at Sol station, that is, the commuter trains that service the Autonomous Region of Madrid.
The Gran Via station is on Metro Madrid Lines 1 and 5. Strategically located beneath Gran Via and the Red de San Luis Plaza, it is right in the very heart of downtown Madrid. Before it was closed last 20 August (2018), some 45,000 passengers used the station daily.
Gran Via station is almost as old as the Gran Via thoroughfare that connects Calle Alcala with Plaza de España and whose construction began in 1910 but wouldn’t be finished until 1929. The station was inaugurated on 17 October 1919 as one of the eight original Metro Madrid stops.
Think about this: From eight stations, Metro Madrid has now grown to 300 stations of twelve Metro Lines and is one of the largest metropolitan networks in Europe.
Like the thoroughfare for which it is named, the Gran Via station has undergone name changes. In the beginning, both the subway station and the thoroughfare were called Gran Via. However, during the Franco regime (1939-1975), the dictator changed the name to Jose Antonio in honor of Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera (April 1903-November 1936), founder of the fascist Falange Española (Spanish Phalanx) party which was active in 1933 and 1934.
Primo de Rivera was accused of conspiracy and military rebellion against the Government of the Second Spanish Republic, was sentenced to death and was executed during the first months of the Civil War (1936-1939). Francoist Spain made him out to be a martyr and the Metro station and the thoroughfare carried his name until 1984 when the first democratically elected mayor of post-Franco Madrid, the socialist Enrique Tierno Galvan (mayor between 1979 and 1986), renamed the thoroughfare Gran Via. Thus, too, the Metro station regained its old name.
Your alternatives to the Gran Via: the nearest Metro stations to the Gran Via, on Line 1, are Tribunal and Sol; Chueca and Callao on Line 5.
Pay attention to announcements at the Metro as there are other stations that are affected until as late as October of this year by the work on Gran Via.
METRO 101, https://www.guidepost.es/metro-101/
IF THE UNDERGROUND HAS LOTS OF ENTRANCES IT MUST BE MADRID, https://www.guidepost.es/tell-me-what-underground-you-take-and-ill-tell-you-what-you-are-in-a-way/
GRAN VIA BACK TO BACK I, https://www.guidepost.es/gran-via-back-to-back-i/
Featured image/serzhile, CC BY2.0
Inside Metro Gran Via/IngolfBLN, uploaded by Magnus Manke, CC BY-SA2.0
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