Nave de Motores de Pacífico (Pacifico Engine Shed) – Madrid, Spain - Atlas Obscura

Nave de Motores de Pacífico (Pacifico Engine Shed)

Pacífico Power Plant

Built to power trains, the engines in this building provided the entire city of Madrid with electricity during the Spanish Civil War. 

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The Nave de Motores de Pacífico (Pacifico Engine Shed) was designed by the Spanish architect Antonio Palacios. It is an outstanding example of clarity and functionality, and a perfect model of industrial building in the 1920s.

The engine shed was built in 1922 and 1923 and started operating immediately, although it was not inaugurated until 1924. Inside are three impressive diesel engines, machinery (alternators, transformers, and the like), as well as other furniture. At that time, these engines were responsible for generating and transform the energy with which the trains worked.

During the Spanish Civil War, due to restrictions, the engine shed came to provide electricity to the whole city of Madrid. Over time energy companies were able to ensure an increasingly regular supply and this power station, which at the time was the largest in Spain, become largely obsolete. It was definitively closed in 1972.

The building stands out for the clarity of its conception, attention to detail and good execution—all characteristics of the work of Palacios, whose work helped define the image of Madrid in the early 20th century. The building was abandoned until 2006, when an agreement between the Madrid City Council and the Madrid Metro Network helped return to the shed its original appearance, including cleaning and restoration of the machinery within.

Know Before You Go

By tube in Pacifico Station. L1

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