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Matthew
01-11-2016, 05:31 AM
imgur album (http://imgur.com/a/alYNJ).

The Spanish know how to build their cities... unlike us.

Also includes a set of images from Madrid Rio, which is the Spanish version of the Big Dig, putting 10 km of highway underground and opening up a massive riverfront park -- with no 'surface artery highway' on top either!

I will say that I think that the amazing Spanish ability to do infrastructure construction on the cheap can sometimes work against them. The station complexes are enormous -- too big. It can take forever to navigate them. At Chamartin I lost count of the number of escalators I had to take to reach the bottom level. And at Madrid-Barajas airport I walked for 1.3 km after exiting passport control before reaching the subway station. I think it's further away from terminal T1 than the MBTA Blue Line Airport station is from Logan terminals. The Spanish response typically was: "yeah it's far, whatever, we can walk". Funny people. I got smart and took a city bus to terminal T1 instead of using the airport subway station, instead, on the way back.

FK4
01-15-2016, 09:57 AM
imgur album (http://imgur.com/a/alYNJ).

The Spanish know how to build their cities... unlike us.

Also includes a set of images from Madrid Rio, which is the Spanish version of the Big Dig, putting 10 km of highway underground and opening up a massive riverfront park -- with no 'surface artery highway' on top either!

I will say that I think that the amazing Spanish ability to do infrastructure construction on the cheap can sometimes work against them.

While their infrastructure may be admirable (Ive only been to Barcelona, and was similarly impressed), it's hard to ignore the fact that in late 2015 the unemployment rate was being touted in a postive way due it being at a 4 year LOW of 21%.... and a ~33% youth unemployment rate for decades... it's certainly in many ways not a model society and i suspect that their luxurious public works projects have something to do with this as well!

Matthew
01-15-2016, 04:29 PM
No, the unemployment problem has everything to do with the Euro currency and Germany's control and mismanagement of it. The Euro was a huge, huge mistake. When the bubble burst, a lot of private money -- in Euros -- simply was picked up and taken out of Spain. Being stuck on the Euro, there is no way for the Spain's economy to adjust except for waiting through years of grinding deflation/unemployment.

Europe is in a continent-wide funk that's currently worse than the Great Depression. It might be harder to notice nowadays because the social safety net is much stronger than in the 1930s, and so far demagogues have been held at bay (for now). Countries that kept their own currency, like the UK, are doing much better (that's why everyone's coming here for work).

But hey, at least beer and food prices are cheap from my perspective! I ate well for just a Euro or two, and my temporary lodging cost less per night than I pay for my regular place in the UK.