The NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) summit is held in Madrid from Tuesday 28 to Thursday 30 June. More than 5,000 attendees are expected from 40 delegations including Heads of State and Government, NATO General Secretariat, 30 allied countries, among others.
The capital will be “shielded” and the people of Madrid will suffer, for the sake of safety, traffic cuts, the closure of some Metro station, museum closures and parking restrictions, among other inconveniences.
The deputy mayor of Madrid, Begoña Villacís, has specified that “In the early hours of tomorrow and late hours, mobility on the surface will be complicated”for which he has urged not to use the private vehicle.
[Cumbre de la OTAN en Madrid: fechas, restricciones de movilidad y transporte gratis]
People who decide to move with their own vehicle through the center of the capital may have problems driving and parking due to security perimeters that may be established around hotels where high-level attendees are staying or monuments and museums where summit-related events take place.
Main areas to avoid
The most affected areas will be Ifema, where the NATO Summit is held, the axis of Paseo de la Castellana and Paseo del Prado. The Madrid City Council has warned that mobility restrictions will be more complicated first thing in the morning and late in the afternoon.
From the consistory they have not wanted to advance more details for security reasons, but it is to be hoped that access routes to Ifema are critical points: the M-11 from Castellana and the Barcelona highway from Avenida de América. At these points it is foreseeable that certain lanes will be enabled exclusively for the routes of the delegations and the Municipal Police and that they will vary for security.
In addition, the companions of those attending the summit have a specific agenda, chaired by Queen Letizia and, although the official program has not been disclosed in detail, it is known to include cultural activities in Madrid and Segovia.
A security perimeter of three kilometers will be established in the surroundings of Ifema. Paseo de la Castellana and Paseo del Prado will also be critical points for safety since “the delegations are fundamentally going to stay in hotel establishments throughout that area” and they will be “practically closed”, as reported by Martínez Almeida.
It’s known that the Paseo del Prado will be closed on the 29th as it will host the Euro-Atlantic dinner organized by the government. Other spaces in which it is known that events and visits will be held and that, therefore, will have reinforced security are the Royal Palace, the Reina Sofía Museum and the Royal Theatre. The Prado will be closed on the 28th and 29th, as well as the Botanical Garden.
The Barajas airport, the Torrejón de Ardoz air base, the hotels where the delegates will stay, and the embassies and consulates are also considered critical areas, in addition to the routes used for travel and the evacuation zones.
They recommend using the subway
The Madrid City Council has recommended that Madrid residents who have to travel do so “fundamentally on the Metro”, while “buses will have more difficulty circulating,” according to their spokesperson, Inmaculada Sanz. Frequencies on lines 1, 5, 6, and 10 will be increased by 10%, and if necessary, and according to demand, on lines 4 and 9. The Feria de Madrid station on line 8, located at IFEMA doors, will be closed between June 28 and 30.
Traveling on the buses of the Municipal Transport Company (EMT) will be free on June 28, 29 and 30, as announced by the mayor, José Luis Martínez-Almeida “to make it easier for people who have to move, although it is better not move in the city”.
Demonstration against NATO
On June 26 from 12 noon, the demonstration against NATO is called from Atocha to Plaza de España under the slogan “No to NATO. No to wars. For peace”, in Madrid, so some of the main streets of the capital will also be closed and traffic in the entire area will be affected.