Madrid Spain
836 of 1114

Madrid, Spain

January 18, 2006
Twenty years separate these two Landsat thematic mapper images of Madrid, the capital of Spain, of the province and autonomous community of Madrid.

The two images clearly show the substantial growth the city has undergone in the last 20 years. By drawing a comparison between the 1984 image on the left and the 2004 image on the right, it is evident that most of the changes occurred in the Eastern and Northeastern parts of Madrid. The Barajas International Airport and the IFEMA trade fair grounds at the Campo de Las Naciones are visible as the bright areas on the left side of the 2004 image. The airport is situated fifteen kilometers from the city center. A major European hub; it was finished in 1928 and has grown to be one of the most important aviation centers of any Hispanic country. Just to the left of the Airport is the Chamartín district, a residential area running from North of the Bernabéu soccer stadium to the Chamartín train station.

The Manzanares River runs through the city and divides the Casa de Campo, the green area to the center left of the images, from the city center. The Manzanares flows mostly in a south-eastern direction and then takes a southerly direction, entering the Monte del Pardo, a heritage protected park belonging to the city of Madrid. From here, the river is canalized and serves as a dividing line between the old center of the city and the Carabanchel and Usera neighborhoods to the South-West. The river leaves the city at its southernmost tip and makes a strong eastern turn before ending its 83km (51 mile) journey.

Contemporary Madrid came into its own after the death of the dictator Franco in 1975. The years spent under the Franco regime left Madrid and much of the country in economic shambles due to isolation. At present, modern Madrid is home to over three million people. It is a cosmopolitan European city which plays host to the headquarters for Public Administration, the Spanish Parliament and the Spanish Royal Family.

Technical Information:
  • Satellite: Landsat
  • Instrument: Thematic Mapper
  • Acquisition: 17-Jul-1984
  • Center coordinates: lat. 40.42, lon. -3.68

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