ON APRIL 7 Madrid Metro inaugurated its 18·3 km suburban feeder line between Puerta de Arganda and Arganda del Rey. Operating above ground along a former industrial railway alignment, the route is worked as an extension of Line 9 with intermediate stations at Rivas Urbanizaciones, Rivas Vaciamadrid and La Poveda.

Operating outside the boundaries of the Madrid municipality, the line has been built by a public-private consortium which has a 30 year operating concession. This includes the Metro, TFM, Fomento de Construcciones y Contratas, ACS and Necso. Total cost of the project was Pts19bn. Alternate trains on Line 9 now continue to Arganda del Rey between 06.00 and 22.00, giving headways of between 12 min at peak times and 27 min at weekends.

A week earlier, on March 29, Madrid celebrated the opening of the final section of metro Line 7, running northwest from Valdezarza to Pitis, where it interchanges with Renfe suburban services. Built by FCC at a cost of Pts18bn, the 4·2 km extension serves intermediate stations at Antonio Machado, Peña Grande, Ilustración and Lacoma. Over the past three years, Madrid has added over 50 km of new line and 37 stations to its metro network.

CAPTION: To operate the extended Line 9 to Arganda del Rey, Madrid Metro put into service on April 9 a fleet of 37 two-car EMUs of Series 6000, purchased by the city for Pts17bn. Each unit is 36·2m long and 2800mm wide, with seats for 52 and a crush capacity of 200 passengers per car. They can operate singly or in sets of two or three. Able to run at 110 km/h on surface sections, the trains have three-phase traction motors and IGBT drives. They are equipped with ATP and ATO, although a driver is still carried. 25 sets have been built by CAF and the other 12 by Alstom