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Aerial view
Some of the platforms
Façade

Estació de França (Catalan for "France Station"; Estación de Francia in Spanish) is a major railway station in Barcelona.

Estació de França is the second busiest railway station of the city after Barcelona-Sants in terms of regional and long-distance ridership. It may lose this status, however, with the arrival of AVE high-speed train in Sants and the upcoming construction of Estació de la Sagrera that will concentrate most of the traffic.

Contents

History and Architecture

A railway station was first built here in the 19th century as the main terminus for trains arriving from France (as its name still suggests), but also for services to North East Catalonia and the Costa Brava.

Re-built and re-opened for the 1929 International Exhibition, the two monumental buildings that make up the station were designed by the architect Pedro Muguruza and inaugurated by King Alfonso XIII. They surround the railway tracks in the shape of a 'U'. In total, the station's structure is 29m tall and 195m long.

It is generally seen as the city's most beautiful station. It is worth seeing in its own right for the restrained mix of classical and more modern styles - complete with decoration in marble, bronze and crystal, and modernista and art déco motifs. Over the last three decades it has been eclipsed as Barcelona’s main station by the subterranean sprawl of Sants. Indeed, the other stations of Barcelona are all at least partly underground, França being the only exception.

Part of the original building now belongs to Pompeu Fabra University, serving as its "França building"[1].

Lines

The station accommodates twelve tracks and seven platforms. It is the terminus for a number of RENFE services:

It is also terminus for international services - such as the increasingly popular overnight Trenhotel to France (as far as Paris), Switzerland, and Italy. In addition, the station is often used as backup terminal when parts of the railway network are undergoing maintenance; the station received a wide variety of services during upgrades to the Arago tunnel during winter of 2008.

Location and Barcelona Metro

The station is located in the east of the city, down between the docks and the zoo. Although it does not have its own metro station, it is easily accessible: directly on the R10 line through central Barcelona (Sants and Passeig de Gràcia), as well as a good five-minute walk from Barceloneta station on line 4 of the Barcelona Metro.

Gallery

See also

References

  1. ^ University Campus - Universitat Pompeu Fabra

External links

Coordinates: 41°23′02″N 2°11′10″E / 41.384°N 2.186°E / 41.384; 2.186

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