2009-2010. Lara Almarcegui. GOING DOWN TO THE RECENTLY EXCAVATED TUNNEL (theoretical and visual data)





The project consists of organising visits to the tunnel that will be excavated 40 meters under the street of Serrano. As the tunnel hasn’t been finished and it won’t have been covered with concrete, the rocky layers of Madrid’s subsoil will be visible. The city, just as it truly is underground.


The visit will take place in the new 7km long tunnel of the AVE that will be excavated during the next two years under Serrano to link Atocha with Chamartin.

The Tunnel boring machines are always active and only stop once a week, therefore visits will take place that same day.

The entrance to the tunnel will be as close to our axis as possible, because there are entrances near Colon and Puerta de Alcalá, but I will have to adapt to the companies’ works, for until we don’t speak to them we won’t be able to define where the entrance will be; But the application as well as its advertising will take place in the Information Service of Madrid Abierto.

Several details such as how many people shall participate and how many visits will take place every day, timetable, the route and otherwise, will depend on the companies and City Hall; I have to adapt to them and I can’t define them yet. The project is unfinished, due to its need to adapt to the works’ reality. We will need a guide that must know as much about Geology and this specific tunnel as possible- we will also collaborate with companies to locate him.


The project has to do with the physical reality of the city, earth, rock, before being a city.

I have always been curious about the many layers that Madrid contains underground (metro, trains, telephone, piping, underground rivers, parking lots, bunkers). The descent into this new underground tunnel is a visit to that which is primitive and to the nature that constitutes the city, but also a rapprochement to Madrid’s other underground facilities.

The project offers the experience of visiting a unique place in process that only exists temporarily and will transform.

The tunnel of Serrano is an important engineering work for the city; a project in the middle of downtown Madrid, using the latest technologies, decentralization…

In the descent to the underground we have the negative side of the city. It’s subconscious. I find very interesting an action that, instead of building, descents, in order to learn more but also to do, simply and brutally, the opposite to what architects do.


Plano de todo el túnel proyectado.



The railroad tunnel that, under Serrano, will link the Atocha and Chamartin stations will be destined to give service to High Velocity trains.

The works will last two years. They will take place at the same time as the remodelling works of Serrano, done by the City Hall, which include a parking lot: Serranopark.

The tunnel is a project done by Adif (Administrator of Rail Road Infrastructures), Organism that depends on public funding.

The Council of Ministers awarded the works to the UTE, a part of Dragados, FCC Constructions, Copisa and Tecsa.
















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