Summer road and rail works in Barcelona: 36 streets in the Eixample, tramways and tube affected
Work on 'superilla' inaugurates a busy summer, with 56 interventions throughout the city
BarcelonaFirst a reassuring message: the City Council does not foresee that this will be a particularly tough summer for coexistence due to road and rail works. Yet works there will be, perhaps not as many as last year (62), but of greater impact on citizens' lives, especially in the Eixample. There work is expected to begin simultaneously on the 36 stretches of street that are to become the first axes of the superilla and on the tramway along Diagonal, which will be accelerated to take advantage of the August slowdown. In total, there will be 56 new different interventions totalling €23.5m of municipal investment, among which the advancement of the reforms of the Via Laietana and Pi i Margall stand out. These are two of the City Council's star projects for this final stretch of its term in office. These works bring the total number of works underway in the city to 183.
There will also be a great deal of rail works: on the tube and both Generalitat and Renfe commuter trains. This is a point the city's infrastructure manager, Manuel Valdés, considers very positive since these works are aimed at increasing the capacity of public transport. "It has been many years since we had a summer with so many railway works," he celebrated during the presentation of the summer plan, and recalled a time when there were seven tunnel boring machines working in the city.
In the infrastructures section, the most important works are those to prepare for the extension of the FGC L8 between Espanya and Gràcia, the removal of asbestos from the stations of Drassanes (out of service from 1 to 17 August) and Liceu (partial service from 11 to 31 August) on tube line L3 and the renewal of tracks on L5 between La Sagrera and Carmel La Sagrera and El Carmel. There will also be work at Sarrià station to prepare for the L9 and, at the end of the summer, Adif will make the necessary track modifications for the new Sant Andreu station.
Important changes for traffic
In terms of traffic, what will have the greatest impact is the start of work on the first four axes and squares of the superilla project. Once work begins in mid-August, it is expected that these streets (Consell de Cent, Rocafort, Borrell and Girona) will no longer be allowed to drive from end to end of these streets: drivers will be forced to turn at every junction, which is what will happen once the superilla project is in place. According to the mobility studies commissioned by the City Council, it will be on streets such as Mallorca in its central section (between Muntaner and Sicília) and Valencia (from Urgell to Rambla de Catalunya) that will be the worst affected.
On the Via Laietana, whose reform has been underway since February, the most critical day will be August 7, when the road will be cut for a whole day in both directions to change the phase of works. The available pavement will be switched to the Besòs side, and work will be carried out between Urquinaona and Joaquim Pou. Work will also begin on new parks in Marina del Prat Vermell, Torre Baró and Colonia Castell, and on the housing estate in Carrer Menéndez Pelayo and Avinguda Joan XXIII, which are part of the Espai Barça project. Work to widen pavements at the intersection of Pelai and Balmes is also expected to be completed.