News

Call for student design competition …

… to design logo, info boards, visual style for Rail4V4+V project (posted 8 September 2021)


Background

In June 2016, the “Rail4V4 + V - Railway Heritage for Sustainable Tourism” project, a Strategic Project of the Visegrad Fund has started. The name of the project Rail4V4 + V indicates that we will present the railway heritage of the V4 countries and Vojvodina using online and traditional tools. In the first phase of the project, we will present 5-5 (25 in total) railway heritages and monuments of the participating countries.

Competition

Aim of the competition: to design the visual style and logo of the project, as well as the information boards and visual elements to be placed at the railway heritage sites

Announcer of the competition: on behalf of the project, the Faculty of Architecture and Design of the Slovak University of Technology (STU)

Application deadline: November 1, 2021.

Applicants: secondary school, university students and young professionals from V4 countries and Serbia, max. 30 years of age

Language of the application: English

Awards: winner EUR 250, second EUR 150, third EUR 100

Student design competition banner pic


Yo can access the "Call for student design competion" here or you can download the "Call for student design competition in pdf format" from here here...


Old Warehouse Caught Fire …

… in Budapest on Sunday night (posted 09 August, 2021)

Sunday (8th August 2021) night around 10.30pm an old warehouse building caught fire at Kerepesi út 15 in Budapest, near to Aréna Mall. Twenty fire engines and near 100 firefighters were working to extinguish the fire. After 12 hours fight the fire brigades put out the fire today around noon.

Old warehouse fire pic


The old warehouses used to belong to the first taxi company in Hungary and Budapest, which was established in 1913. According to Blikk the warehouses are used nowadays by film makers, who usually store sets and props in the old buildings. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Fire extinguished pic


To see more pictures visit our Facebook page.


125th anniversary of the Budapest Underground …

… temporary exhibition at BKV Underground Railway Museum posted (6 August 2021)

The Budapest Underground Railway (M1 Yellow Line), which many refer to as the Millennium Underground Railway, or as a “small underground”, is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year. On the occasion of the anniversary a new temporary exhibition was opened in the Deák Square Museum of BKV.

Millennium underground 125th anniversary pic


The Underground Railway Museum commemorates the first underground of the continental Europe, handed over on 2nd May 1896. The museum was established in an authentic setting, in the tunnel section of the Millennium Underground Railway, which was closed down during the construction of the East-West Metro Line (M2 Red Line) in the 1950s.

In addition to the vintage railcars, the exhibition showcases material heritage, original documents, blueprints, maps, photos and models throughout Millennium Underground Railway’s 125 years history.

Temp exhibit pic


The temporary exhibition complements the collection of the permanent exhibition with several interesting information, stories and images. Among other things, we can get acquainted with the London underground which served as a model for the Millennium Underground, the person behind the idea, the millennium events which promoted the construction, the architectural and technical innovations of the underground, the vehicles, and we can get an insight into the world of contemporary drivers, conductors and inspectors.

The permanent and temporary exhibition well worth a visit for a price of a bus ticket (350 HUF appr 1 EUR).

To see more pictures visit our Facebook page.


Inota Thermal Power Station …

… derelict but astonishing (published 31 July 2021)


We have visited Inota Thermal Power Station on a guided tour organised by Túrajó Egyesület. Inota power plant was built between 1950-1954 as a greenfield investment near to Inota village. Its trial operation started on 7th November 1951, that’s why it was named “7th November Thermal Power Plant”. (For younger generation, the Great October Socialist Revolution started on 7th November 1917 and people in the Soviet bloc had to celebrate the anniversary each year until the change of regime). The power plant was connected to the national grid on 6th December 1951.

The chief architect of the power plant was Gyula Mátrai, the internal construction works were supervised by Károly Mokk. When completed in 1954 the plant had 7 boilers and 6 steam turbine generators. Total capacity of the six electric generators was 120MW.

Inota main building pic

The power station was using lignite from the Várpalota mines. In 1954 a cableway was installed between the S.II. Várpalota mine and the power plant, but its transport capacity did not cover the needs, so the coal needed for production had to be supplied by rail from other mining plants.

In the 1970s it became evident, that peak power plants should be added to the network to satisfy peak demand in electricity. Construction of “peaker” proved to be the most economical at the Inota, 7th November Thermal Power Plant site. Two gas turbines with a nominal capacity of 100 MW each were authorised and purchased from the Soviet Union.The gas turbines were connected to the national electric grid on the winters of 1973-74 and 1974-75.

Inota Power Station pic

There were two major reconstructions at Inota power station. As part of Reconstruction I, boilers 3 to 7 were renovated between 1975 and 1986. The steam energy produced by the boilers was utilized by the aluminum smelter, and the thermal energy provided heating and hot water to the city. During Reconstruction II, in parallel with the boiler renovations, fly-ash separating electrofilters were also installed until 1990.

Power House pic

In 1991 Ajka Thermal Power Plant Company and 7th November Thermal Power Plant Company merged, and later in 1992 the merged company was transformed into a joint stock company Bakonyi Power Plant Plc. In 1998 Bakonyi Plc. was privatised. By this time the Inota Power Station was in a bad technical condition, several boilers and generators were dismantled either for material fatigue or for making space for new technology. The capacity of the power station has been reduced to one tenth of the original. In the autumn of 1999, Hungarian Electrical Works cancelled the planned long-term power purchase agreement, and closure became inevitable. The Inota Power Plant finished operation end of 2001 and officially closed on 1 January 2002.

Control Room pic

In the following months and years, the equipment was dismantled and some of the buildings and the chimneys were demolished. The closed down power station is utilised for film making (e.g. Red Sparrow) or photo and urbex tours, the cultural center used as retro theatre or event venue.

To see more pictures visit our Facebook page.


Once there was the Északi …

… the story continues (posted 25 July 2021)

We have visited the temporary exhibition of the Hungarian Museum of Transport. The new home of the Museum of Transport is expected to open to the public on the former Northern Train Maintenance Depot (Északi Járműjavító) territory in 2026. With the temporary exhibit, the museum aimed to demonstrate how the new home would look like.

Szellem pic


Beside showcasing historic locomotives and train cars the exhibition wanted to show the history of the Northern Train Maintenance Depot, and present what life and work were like at the formerly largest railway maintenance depot in the country.
Visiting the exhibition, you can see see the first of the iconic steam engine 424 (001), the Árpád railbus, as well as the futuristic steam engine with the nickname Szellem (Ghost), which is the speed record holder among steam engines in Hungary and the V60 electric locomotive designed by Kálmán Kandó.

Arpad railbus pic


You can also see design plans of the new Transport Museum, watch videos of the cultural life of the Északi, learn how the public transport network developed in Budapest.

To see more pictures visit our Facebook page.


Celebrating 175th anniversary of the first Hungarian railway line …

… with opening of temporary exhibitions in Göd and Budapest (posted 15th July 2021)

On 15th July 1846 Hungary’s first railway line was handed over. The 33km line between (Buda)Pest and Vác was privately financed and operated, It was the first steam-powered railway in Hungary. (The first horse-drawn railway between Pozsony-Nagyszombat /Bratislava-Trnava/ started operation in 1840.)

First railway line of Hungary pic

Celebrating the anniversary, a memorial plaque was inaugurated at Göd station and a temporary exhibit was opened.

Memorial Plaque at Göd pic

The Hungarian Museum of Transport has also commemorated the 175th birth anniversary of the Hungarian railway and opened a temporary exhibition (from 16 July till 31 October 2021) at Northern Train Maintenance Depot.

Temporary railway exhibition pic


You can see vintage trains and buses at Lake Balaton …

… on the weekends 10-11 July and 6-8 August (posted 07 July 2021)

This weekend (10-11 July 2011) you can see several vintage trains and buses on the northern shore of Lake Balaton. MÁV Hungarian Railways together with Volánbusz a Hungarian coach operator will organise a so-called “Retro Weekend”. Volánbusz will operate shuttle buses between Balatonföldvár and Tihany, Tapolca and Szigliget, Badacsonytomaj and Salföld, Zánka/Balatonakali and Hegyestű. You can travel on legendary Ikarus 55, Ikarus 66 and Ikarus 266 buses (see schedule here).

Banner pic


MÁV will use vintage locomotives such M40, M61, M62 on different lines, for timetable and details visit this site.

If you missed this opportunity, MÁV and Volánbusz plan to organise the next “Retro Weeekend” at Balaton on 6-8 August 2021.


Railway Heritage for Sustainable Tourism Development Rail4V4+V …

… project kickoff was held online on 28th June 2021 (posted 5 July 2021)

On 28th June 2021, the Kick-off meeting of the project Railway Heritage for Sustainable Tourism Development - Rail4V4+V was held online. This long term Visegrad Fund Strategic Project is going to last for 18 months and engage five partners from Serbia, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Poland. The project aims to highlight the tourist potential of the railway, particularly through its history and heritage, recalling the role that rail has played in creating the Central European collective identity. In line with the aim of the European Year of Rail and strategic priorities of the Visegrad Group in 2021, the main goal of the proposed project is to raise awareness about the role of railways for V4 sustainable tourism development, through unique branding and presentation of railway heritage, in situ and on a digital platform.

Banner pic


At the Kick-off meeting, five partner organisations: Cultural studies platform CULTstore, Novi Sad (SRB), Industrial Heritage Hungary (Aviscon Ltd.), Budapest (HU), Research Centre for Industrial Heritage FA CTU Prague (CZ), the Slovak University of Technology in Bratislava Faculty of Architecture and Design (SK), and Foundation for the Protection of Silesian Industrial Heritage, Wroclaw (PL) planned and prepared detailed framework of activities and agreed on common goals and results. Partners discussed and talked through various parts of the project, including research, student design competition, workshops, dissemination of the results, evaluation of the activities. Although there were only a few hours and many topics to discuss, partners came back with new ideas and motivation and hope to keep up with such good work. The project is co-financed by the Governments of Czechia, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia through Visegrad Grants from International Visegrad Fund. The mission of the fund is to advance ideas for sustainable regional cooperation in Central Europe.  


Temporary exhibition of Transport Museum …

… open from 16th July till 31st October 2021 (posted 1 July 2021)

The Hungarian Museum of Transport in Városliget (City Park) was closed on 15 April 2015 for renovation, as part of the large scale Liget Budapest Project. The museum will move to the Northern Train Maintenance Depot in Köbánya (10th disrict of Budapest) into the Diesel Hall (built in 1962), a 22,000 sqm large workshop. To design the museum building and amenities an international design competition was announced on August 9, 2018. The winner of the competition was Diller Scofidio + Renfro. The award ceremony took place in the Diesel Hall on 28 February 2019. The Transport Museum planned to be opened with significant delay in 2026 (instead of 2022).

Banner pic


After the third wave of the covid pandemic a temporary exhibition will be open from 16th July to 31st October at the new premise. In the temporary exhibition not just the famous steam (424 and 242) and electric (v60) locomotives and railcars will be showcased, but the plans of the new museum and the infrastructure (rails, gantry cranes, walls, and pipes) of the the Diesel Workshop can be studied as well. You can buy tickets here, and see short introduction video below (for English part go to 00.50) 


You find updated information of the Transport Museum here...


Old mill in Géderlak renovated …

… and transformed to a luxury family house (posted 3rd May 2021)

The old mill in Géderlak (a small village North from Kalocsa) was built around the turn of the 20th century. After terminating the milling operation, the mill was used as a granary or warehouse. Since the 1950-ies the building was unused and degraded see Googlemaps photo from 2011. The mill is a listed architectural heritage of Géderlak.

Derelict Becsemalom pic

István Tóth Managing director of Dunativ FM Kft. fall in love with this industrial heritage building and decided to save and restore the mill. At the beginning he was thinking to transform the building to a workers’ hostel, but the structure was so exciting, so he decided to rebuild it to a luxury home.

Renovated Becsemalom pic

The facades and roofing were meticulously renovated, and interior architecture turned the indoor industrial spaces of the old building into liveable housing. The house is also equipped with all facilities to be a “smart home”. Planned completion of the project is September 2021. Architect: Róbert Kernya. Interior design: Plan-E Art Studio. Furnishings, visual design: Flóra Orosz.

Becsemalom interior pic

For more photos and additional information, see our Facebook post and on the website of Becsemalom.


BIVAK studio won International Architectural Design Competition …

… for the renovation and redevelopment of Wholesale Market buildings (posted 29 April 2021)

BFK Budapest Development Agency announced an Open International Architectural Design Competition on 17th December 2020. The goals of the competition included the preparation of plans for the renovation of industrial heritage Wholesale Market buildings, the identification of their new functions, as well as the design of the first student housing of the Budapest Student City, the development of the immediate environment of the buildings and their integration into the envisaged new university district.

The jury evaluated 23 applications and announced the winners on 27th April 2021. The first prize was awarded to BIVAK studio Kft, a “young architecture practice based in Budapest characterized by an experimental attitude and a flare for manual techniques”

Wholesale-Market-Concept1 pic

Redevelopment of the great hall building of the Wholesale Market would include auditorium, sound studios and rehearsal rooms, fitness & bodybuilding studio and handball/basketball courts on the basement level and multifunctional spaces, marketplace, sport and dance facilities, shops, bars, restaurants on the ground level. On the gallery level restaurants, cafes, meeting rooms and various sport facilities -including a 500m long running track- would be developed.

Wholesale-Market-Concept2 pic

The jury emphasised that the plans preserve the industrial and architectural values of the buildings while adding new functions to them. The dormitory building’s façade is in harmony with the Klinker-bricked heritage office building.

Wholesale-Market-Concept3-Dorm pic

For more photos and additional information, see our Facebook post.


New hopes for saving Wholesale Market buildings …

… and revitalising a 135 hectares brownfield (posted 28 April 2021)

On 3rd July 2018 KKBK Centre of Key Government Investments Nonprofit Plc. announced an International Master Plan Design Competition to develop a master plan for the Budapest South Gate (BSG) priority project. The goal of the project is to revitalise a 135 hectares brownfield area near and around the Wholesale Market by the construction of a student city for 12,000 university students and sports facilities including an athletic stadium with a capacity for 15,000 spectators.

Brownfield pic

Out of 17 applications the winner of the Master Plan Design Competition was the joint application of Snohetta Innsbruck and Verkehrsingenieure Besch und Partner. You find details of their Master Plan on Snohetta’s website and on the BSG Project’s website.
Since the power plant has not seen any major renovations for a half century, low efficiency, poor technical condition, and requirement for ensuring long-term operability demanded renovation and modernization of the power plant.

Winner Master Plan pic

The refurbished Wholesale Market and adjacent office building would be an integral part of the Student City, they would be used as event venues, canteens, community spaces, sport facilities, pubs. Additionally, a spacious public plaza would connect these historical relicts to the river.

Spacious plaza pic

Since the announcement of the winner of the Master Plan Design Competition on 19th December 2018 not much was heard about the Budapest South Gate project. Until mid-April 2021, when it was revealed that construction of the Fudan University campus would take place at the site of the Budapest Student City – Southern City Gate Development Program. The Fudan University project supported by the government is criticised for its financial structure and for various political reasons.

For more photos and additional information, see our Facebook post.


Mártély Train Station Nicely Renovated…

… …but its sustainability is a question (posted 17 March 2021)

In the third wave of the Covid pandemic it has not received much media coverage, but the renovation of Mártély train station was completed in January 2021. The Mártély railway station is situated along the Szentes–Hódmezővásárhely HÉV railway line (HÉV is Railway of Local Interest), which was built in 1894. The Mártély station building was erected in 1900 based on the type plans of MÁV Hungarian Railways. The building nicely combines the traditions of vernacular architecture with the functions of a railway station.

Mártély train station pic

In the 1980-ies the passenger facilities were modernised, and a covered porch in similar style was attached to the building. The Mártély train station is one of the loveliest railway stations in Hungary, and its 1:25 model can be seen in Mini Hungary Model Park.

Mártély village pic

We are a bit concerned about the sustainability of this renovation, since the service of the station was terminated on 11 December 2020. For more photos and additional information, see our Facebook post.


Kelenföld Station Building will be refurbished…

… and will serve as an exhibition venue for the Transport Museum (posted 11 February 2021)

The Kelenföld Railway Station is among the 4 busiest stations in Budapest. It was built in 1876, but after the inauguration of the Southern Railway Bridge in 1877 its traffic was increasing rapidly. So, in 1884 a new station building was erected, which area was twice as big as the type plans of standard stations buildings of the era. During the past 137 years the building has not undergone any major renovation work, and in 2019 it was closed down. On 9th February 2021, the Hungarian Government declared the refurbishment of the Kelenföld Station Building a priority project (55/2021. (II. 9.) Government Decree).

Kelenföld Station Building pic

Based on the concept of the Hungarian Museum of Transport, the Kelenföld Station Building will be renovated and transformed to a railway exhibition venue. The main attraction of the railway history exhibition will be a model railroad table covering several hundreds square meters. The building will also contain a bistro and a so-called train spotting terrace. Landscaping around the station building will include a train themed playground, open-air movie and exhibiting a 100+ years old locomotive.

Kelenföld Station Building inside pic

Renovation of the industrial heritage building and adding new functions to the building and its neighbourhood will be done based on the plans of Építész Stúdió an architect studio. For more photos and additional information, see our Facebook post.


Gibárt Hydropower Plant renovated and upgraded …

… by ALTEO Group with an 1,2 billion HUF investment (posted 16 December 2020)

Gibárt Hydropower Plant is situated in N-E Hungary at River Hernád near to Encs. The plant was built by Baron János Harkányi who wished to supply with electricity his holdings and the neighbouring settlements within 30-40 kms. The diversion-type hydroelectric power plant was designed in 1901, built in 1902 and put into operation in 1903. The plant was built on the site of a former water mill, so the power plant could use the diversion channel of the mill.

Gibárt Hydropower Plan

Demand for electricity was growing fast, so in 1907 a new 294.4 kW turbine and three-phase generator was added, and in the following years another 294,4 kW turbine and generator was installed, replacing the original low-capacity equipment. The Gibárt plant was connected to a 12kV/3kV grid. The generators and the turbines were made by Ganz and Partner Plc. Though the generators were re-wired to 400V in 1958 and 1959 and the Francis turbines’ runners were replaced due to wear, but this setup was in operation till 2019. The Gibárt Hydropower Plant and its surrounding were classified as historical monuments in 2005.
Since the power plant has not seen any major renovations for a half century, low efficiency, poor technical condition, and requirement for ensuring long-term operability demanded renovation and modernization of the power plant.

Gibart Power House pic

The hydroelectric power plant is owned by Észak-magyarországi Áramszolgáltató Nyrt. ALTEO Group is the lessee and operator of the plant. In 2019 ALTEO started the renovation and upgrade of the Gibárt Hydropower Plant. One of the key elements of the 1.2 billion HUF investment was the replacement of the turbines with state-of-the-art high-efficiency turbines that provide higher water yield and have a capacity of 5.75 GWh/year, representing a 70% increase in performance. The lifetime of the plant is extended by an additional 35 years. The renovation and the modernization were completed during 2020 and the new technology was put in operation in October, but official inauguration will be after the pandemic.

Power House inside pic

The modernization enables the monument character and status of the power plant to be preserved and showcased in the long-run. The old turbines, generators and other equipment removed from the facility will be put on display for the public.

For more photos and additional information, see our Facebook post.


Industrial reuse project receives Construction Industry Award 2020…

… for transforming industrial building to dance theatre (posted 11 December 2020)

Ganz Electric Works -which history dates back as far as 1878- was a prestigious company producing generators, transformers, electric motors, and power plant supplies. After successful decades, the company was nationalised in 1946, and its workshops in Buda ceased operation around the 1990s. The rehabilitation of the industrial area started in 2000. During the process, the former industrial buildings were turned into public buildings and spaces with cultural and entertainment functions. The brownfield revitalisation project also created a new public park called Millenáris Park, a nice example of landscaping.

Millenáris Teátrum pic

In 2001 Building “E” -the transformer workshop- of the Ganz complex was converted to an event hall and theatre called Millenáris Teátrum. In 2014 a government decree was issued, to relocate the National Dance Theatre from the Buda Castle to the building of the Teátrum and transform the building to a state-of-the-art dance theatre. ZDA Zoboki Design & Architecture was mandated to prepare the plans. Construction started by internal and external partial demolition works in March 2017 and the building was inaugurated on 15 February 2019. Budget of the investment was 4.6 billion HUF.

National Dance Theatre pic

As the National Dance Theatre introduces its new home: “The 6950-square-meter building received a new main façade and lobby, and a large auditorium with a capacity of 368 seats, a small auditorium with 120 seats, two rehearsal rooms, a chamber room, together with the related service rooms and changing rooms. There is also a recording studio in the building, which extends the artistic possibilities of dance productions. Specially designed for dance performances, the main building meets the most modern technical requirements and has a special stage of 16x24 metres. The café, which is constantly open in the new lobby independently from the theatrical season, also serves the concept of creating a new community space.”

Large auditorium pic

For more photos and additional information, see our Facebook post. Details about the building and stage technique you find in this pdf magazine (in Hungarian only).


Open Factory Weekend at the Csepel Works …

… organised by KÉK on 3rd October 2020 (posted 4 October, 2020)

The Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre - KÉK is an independent professional organisation founded in 2006 with the aim of opening new perspectives in architectural and urban thinking in Hungary. Yesterday (3rd October, 2020) KÉK organised its second Open Factory Weekend at the Csepel Works. Though, because of the coronavirus epidemic only a few manufactures, workshops opened their gates to public but the many open-air programs (guided walks, techno-party, factory tours, open-air exhibitions, dessert tasting, talks) attracted hundreds of urban explorers, industry and industrial heritage enthusiasts.

Banner pic


At Carborobot Kft. – producing multifuel boilers – we could visit the workshop, where several vintage metal fabrication machines (lathes, milling machines, drills, shearing machines) from the 1950-1960ies are still in use. In the workshop of Iamart Manufacture we could see the full cycle of cement tiles’ production (mixing, moulding, pressing, drying and QC). We hope next year the tradition continues and we can visit the Open Factory Weekend the 3rd. time.  

Guided tours pic


You find more photos of the Art Studio at the Open Factory Weekend here...


Travel limitations to Hungary …

… because of the coronavirus pandemic (updated 09/11/2020)

Update 09/11/2020: New measures to take effect at midnight on November 11: A curfew will be instated between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. All forms of assembly will be forbidden. Restaurants must close, but food delivery will remain possible. Shops and services (e.g., hairdressers) must close by 7 p.m. Hotels may only host business travelers. There will be a general ban on events.

Update 04/11/2020: Government is reintroducing the state of emergency in connection to the coronavirus epidemic. Curfew restrictions between midnight and 5 am. Closing of entertainment venues (bars, dance clubs). Free parking. Distancing in theater, cinema, stadium.

Update 28/08/2020: BREAKING - New travel restrictions to take effect starting September 1: No foreigners are allowed entry to Hungary... The travel restriction measures will stay in force for at least a month...

Update 11/04/2020: the government is extending indefinitely restrictions on movement introduced in Hungary on 27th March 2020 to combat the novel coronavirus epidemic...

Update 27/03/2020: today morning PM Viktor Orbán has announced curfew between March 28 and April 11...

Cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) have been confirmed in Hungary. The Hungarian authorities have introduced a number of measures to limit the spread of the virus.

The Hungarian Prime Minister announced on 16 March that Hungary would close all borders to foreigners at midnight on Monday 16 March. Only Hungarian citizens and EEA citizens (including UK nationals) holding a Permanent Residence Card or a Registration Certificate and Address Card will be allowed to enter the country.

The restrictions will remain in effect indefinitely, until revoked. Further restrictions to daily life may be announced over the coming days and we are monitoring the situation. The situation may change rapidly, including in neighbouring countries, where some airports have closed or ceased direct flights to the UK, USA, Canada and other countries.

coronavirus pic

A case study of Industrial heritage in the Ruhr Area …

… online event organised by CEU (posted 09 July 2020)


Happy to share with you the invitation of CEU Central European University to their online event „Benefits and Disadvantages of a Unitary Mindscape? A case study of Industrial heritage in the Ruhr Area. In memoriam Dr. Dagmar Kift”. The event is scheduled at Friday, July 10, 2020, 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm.

CEU-Online-banner


You can find details of the program and link to the online platform here.


In Memoriam Cattle Slaughterhouse…

… near 150 years old industrial heritage demolished (published 26 February 2020)


Cattle Slaughterhouse was one of the most significant food industry heritages in Budapest and Hungary. It had a major role in Budapest’s food safety and hygiene reform to fight against epidemics. Its story started in 1868 when the city council decided to terminate the operation of the private slaughterhouses in Pest and would build and supervise a public slaughterhouse. Construction works of the Cattle Slaughterhouse started in spring of 1870, and the opening of the 14-hectares complex took place on 27th July 1872.

The Abattoir complex had an impressive main entrance: 28.5 m wide and decorated by two sculptures (a bull and a buffalo) of Reinhold Begas. Opposite of the entrance was the most impressive building of the slaughterhouse complex; the water tower, attached to it the trial slaughter chambers, inspection laboratories, boiler room, and the engine room, where the steam-powered pumps were operating. Left and right from the entrance were standing the slaughter, splitting and wholesale cutting as well as the cold chambers. These meat processing buildings were especially valuable from industrial heritage point of view. They were very modern at the time of construction: for example the cold chambers had steel ceilings with ice holding trays, which cooled down the air temperature to 2C.

Cattle Slaughterhouse anno pic

Now, everything is demolished: only the gate, the water tower (but without its wing buildings) and an office building (left to the gate) are standing.
A large-scale real estate development is ongoing, which “would transform a derelict former slaughterhouse complex into a dynamic residential and office district with complementary retail and leisure provision and two underground levels of parking”.
Chapman Taylor’s London and Brussels studios created the masterplan concept on behalf of APD Real Estate Kft. for this project. APD Real Estate Kft. is owned by Turkish businessman Adnan Polat who has excellent connections with high-ranking Hungarian and Turkish politicians. Not surprisingly, the investment enjoys a privileged priority project status.

Cattle Slaughterhouse demolished pic

According to Chapman Taylor’s: “The historical structures on the site – the Bull Gate, the water tower and the two main elevations of the old slaughterhouse buildings – are sensitively incorporated into the masterplan design.” And this is what the visualisation of the plan foreshadows, but in fact the side buildings of the water tower and both slaughterhouse buildings (the facades as well) and all other buildings of the complex are completely demolished.

Visualisation pic

Architects, heritage conservation professionals have serious concerns what will happen with this iconic industrial heritage, since the visualisations of the master plan has disappeared from Chapman Taylor’s website, but still available here.  Unfortunately, the Cattle Slaughterhouse was not classified as an industrial monument, however enjoyed some type of local protection.


CEU course on Industrial Heritage revitalisation …

… to be held in Budapest 6-15 July 2020 (posted 01 February 2020)


Central European University (CEU) is organizing a Summer University course on “Industrial Heritage as a Source of Social Empowerment and Economic Revitalization” in Budapest, Hungary, 6 July – 15 July 2020.

Through this course, you can learn how an industrial site can be converted from a problematic legacy into a social and economic resource. The multidisciplinary faculty includes practitioners and academics, featuring researchers, policy experts, spatial planners, managers, cultural actors, and artists. Based on their personal experience, they will present model projects such as ExRotaprint in Berlin. The course will look at tangible and intangible heritage – landscapes, buildings, industrial equipment and artefacts, practices, knowledge, and social structures – linked to industrial areas.

CEU course pic


The course is composed of three modules focusing on three broad areas connected to industrial heritage as a social and economic resource: value assessment; policies including spatial and urban planning; best practices (as well as problem cases). Industrial Heritage site visits in Budapest and a field trip in Northern Hungary are integral parts of the course.

First application deadline: February 14, 2020. You find more information on the course and application on CEU Summer University website. You can download the course flyer here.


Renovation of Fort Csillag completed…

… and will be opened as collection of plaster casts of Museum of Fine Arts (posted 22 September, 2019)


Fort Csillag is one of the most exciting fortress of the Fort System of Komárom which consists of three modern age forts on the right side of the Danube (Fort Monostor, Fort Igmánd and Fort Csillag).

Fort Csillag pic

Csepel Automobile Factory was established in November 1949 on the premises of the former Fort Csillag received its name after its star-shaped layout (csillag means star in Hungarian). The Fort is standing on the site of the former Saint Peter palisade of the Ottoman era (16th century). The fort was re-built between 1850-1870 at a strategically important point, opposite to the Old Fortress of Komárom. Its main tasks were to protect the central fortresses, supervise or block ship traffic on the Danube, defend existing bridge or possible pontoon bridges on the Danube. The Army of the Austro-Hungarian Empire used the buildings of the Fort partly as barracks and partly as a storage facility. Between the two World Wars Fort Csillag was mostly used for storing ammunition. Fort Csillag also served as a safe-haven for Polish soldiers and officers at the beginning of World War II and it was also used for internment camp for Jews and Gipsies. After World War II several emergency accommodations were established in the Fort, later a company was operating in the fort storing vegetables and grocery products. In the past decades the fort was not utilised and degraded

Exhibition Hall pic

In 2013 the government decided to renovate and revitalise the fort and to move the plaster casts of the Museum of Fine Arts in a new exhibition hall to be built inside the fort. A 6 billion Forint budget was allocated to the project. Fortunately, the plans of the fort were found in the military archives of Vienna so -where was possible- the fort was restored based on original plans, using 115,000 recycled bricks. To exhibit the plaster replicas of huge sculptures like equestrian statues, a modern 7000sqm cultural centre was built in the inner courtyard of the fort.

Visualisation

This weekend (21-22 September 2019) the fort was temporarily open, and in the coming month the plaster (gypsum) casts will be moved to the new exhibition venue. Fort Csillag and the gypsum cast exhibition will be opened to public in March 2020.

UPDATE (16 December 2020): Renovation of the Fort Csillag received Construction Industry Award 2020. The designer of the reconstruction was Mányi István Architect Studio.


Csepel Automobile Factory 70th anniversary…

… celebration with open factory day and exhibition (posted 9 September, 2019)


On 8th September 2019 was an open day at the site of the former Csepel Automobile Factory (Csepel Autógyár) in Szigetszentmiklós. The organisers commemorated the 70th anniversary of the establishment of Csepel Autógyár and showcased more than 30 models of the factory on an open-air exhibition and in the Csepel Autó Museum. Hundreds of residents, car lovers, automotive industry enthusiasts and former employees (usually with their families) visited the event.

Csepel Automobile Factory pic

Csepel Automobile Factory was established in November 1949 on the premises of the former Danube Aircraft Works (Dunai Repülőgépgyár). Csepel Automobile Factory started to operate in November by using the licences of Steyr Austria wich was acquired by the Hungarian State end of 1948. The first 4-cylinder engine was made in December 1949 and the first three D-350 Diesel trucks were finished on 3rd April 1950. Between 1950 and 1994 the factory produced more than 74,000 trucks and road tractors, 10,000 trailers and 28,000 undercarriages. Till 1983 the company produced 294,000 2-4-6 cylinder engines. Csepel Automobile Factory also supplied undercarriages (more than 210,000 pieces between 1971-1991) for Ikarus buses. In the 1970-ies were the golden years of the company, when more than 10,000 people were working in the factory.

Csepel D420 pic

In 1990-1991 the bus manufacturer Ikarus lost its markets in the communist block and could not pay for the 1000 undercarriages produced by Csepel Autógyár making Csepel Automobile Factory bankrupt. A liquidation process started in 1992. The state owned Csepel Automobile Factory was transformed into smaller companies like the Csepel Autógyár Kft. (1996), but these enterprises were not viable and after a liquidation process starting in 1999 the Csepel Automotive Factory was ultimately closed down in 2002. ÁTI-Sziget Kft. acquired the 80 hectares estate of the automotive company and operates an industrial park on the site.

Open day pic

On the open day participants could see the historical vehicles, visit the Csepel Autó Museum and the huge bomb shelter on the premise, sit in or travel on oldtimer buses and attend on several side programs.


European Heritage Days in Hungary…

… will be held on 21-22 September, 2019 (posted 06 September, 2019)


European Heritage Days (Kulturális Örökség Napjai) will be on 21-22 September, 2019 (SAT-SUN). In Hungary hundreds of heritage sites, buildings, museums can be visited, including a dozen of industrial heritage facilities. This year -as the banner suggests- houses and venues of entertainment (e.g. theatres, cinemas, ball rooms, music halls) are in focus. Though most of the guided tours are available on the Heritage Days in Hungarian only, there are some tours in English as well. You can find English tours and programs here.

Heritage Days pic


In Budapest, the industrial heritage tours will be conducted in Hungarian language. Industrial heritages are open to visit: Underground Museum, Lechner Competence Center (former Tobacco Factory), Kőbánya Reservoir, Ferenc Transformer, Rákoshegy Watertower.


Open Factory Weekend at the Csepel Works …

… organised by KÉK on 29-30th June 2019 (posted 30 June, 2019)

The Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre - KÉK is an independent professional organisation founded in 2006 with the aim of opening new perspectives in architectural and urban thinking in Hungary. This Saturday/Sunday (29-30th June, 2019) KÉK organised an Open Factory Weekend at the Csepel Works. Some twenty factories, manufactures, workshops opened their gates to public. Hundreds of urban explorers, industry and industrial heritage enthusiasts visited the workshops and attended guided tours of KÉK and other programs of the event.

Szoke showroom pic


The Art Studio of Gábor Miklós Szőke -the renowned sculptor famous for his public animal sculptures like the Fradi Eagle, Atlanta Falcon or Horse of Somorja- was open as well. The studio complex comprises of 5 factory buildings of the Csepel Works: some of them were nicely renovated and rebuilt for the purpose of offices, exhibition or event hall; other buildings are used as workshops or stores; and some recently acquired buildings are waiting for renovation and reuse. Gábor and his partner Berta Hauer (Branding & Sales Director) welcomed the appr 50 participants and talked about their projects, how they developed the studio complex and about their future plans. It was nice to see the renovated old buildings, the revitalised brownfield area and to listen the anecdotes of Gábor about his projects.

Szoke warehouse pic


You find more photos of the Art Studio at the Open Factory Weekend here...


Industrial Monument Brewery will be Refurbished …

… in Keszthely from TSDOP fund (posted 19 June, 2019)

The old derelict building of the Reischl Brewhouse is just 800 m South of the Festetics Palace in Keszthely. Though the brewery enjoys an industrial monument status, it’s out of use since decades and constantly degrading. The first buildings of the E-shaped brewery complex were built by Count Pál Festetics around 1770 (architect Kristóf Hofstädter). In 1793 the building was transformed by architect György János Rantz, and significantly extended and upgraded in the second half of the 19th century by Vencel Reischl a master brewer from Bohemia.

Reischl settled down in Keszthely in 1844 and acquired the brewery from the Festetics family in 1864. The Reischl family operated the brewery until 1948, when the brewhouse was nationalised, and the family emigrated the same year. The brewery operated till end of 1950s, from the 1960 a cheesemaker was working in the complex.

Reischl Brewhouse pic


The brewery will be renovated and refurbished from HUF 850 million sourced from the Territorial and Settlement Development Operational Program (TSDOP). From another HUF 250 million TSDOP fund the baroque annexes will be renewed. The renewed Reischl brewhouse will accommodate a craft brewery with pub, restaurant, a business incubator house, offices, community and commercial spaces. The project planned to be finished by end of 2020.

Visualisation of brewhouse pic


You find more photos of the project here. This video shows a short summary of the development.


Historic István Mill in Békéscsaba Burnt Down …

… and might need to be demolished (posted 26 May, 2019)

Tuesday (21st May 2019) afternoon around 5pm the industrial heritage István Mill in Békéscsaba caught fire. The fire was very fierce and large so fire brigades from Békéscsaba and 6 other neighbouring towns were alarmed. Fifteen fire engines and 67 firefighters were working to extinguish the fire. The fire spreaded to a side building and the roof of the mill has collapsed inwards at 18.30. The fire was brought under control by 20.45pm and put out by 22pm. Firefighters have worked extremely hard to prevent the fire spreading to adjacent buildings and hospital.

Békéscsaba István Mill pic


The burnt down historic mill (named after its owner the Rosenthal Mill) was built in 1912 (a 5-storey building), and after a fire in 1915 the mill was upgraded to the current 6-storey building and 7-storey tower (1916). Need to mention, that on the premise of the mill a steam mill had already started operation in 1853, which was acquired by Márton Rosenthal and after several developments became the second biggest steam mill in the countryside of Hungary in the 1890-ies.

The mill was nationalised in 1948 and renamed to István Mill. Machines, rollers were re-equipped and electrified in 1961.  After the change of regime (1989) in Hungary the István Mill was privatised in 1999 and was working until 2005 when it terminated the milling operation. Before the fire the mill was waiting for redevelopment.

Békéscsaba István Mill Burnt Down pic


You find more photos of the fire here. This video shows the mill in 2018. The video here shows the fire.


ICOMOS Awards for exemplary renovations …

… were given to six nominees on 25th April (published 28/04/2019)

The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) is a global non-government organisation, that works for the conservation and protection of cultural heritage places around the world. The Hungarian National Committee of ICOMOS each year acknowledges the exemplary works in the field of monumental protection and restoration.

Budajenő Granary pic


On 25th April 2019 in the Ozora Castle ICOMOS Award was given to four nominees in the category of exemplary restoration: (i) House of Jewish Excellence (a former church, later synagogue in Balatonfüred); (ii) Granary in Budajenő; (iii) Historic Town Hall of Buda; and the (iv) Reformed Church in Gacsály.

The ICOMOS Hungarian National Commitee also awarded the (v) Füzérradvány Castle and the (vi) Szent Lőrinc Church in Nagylózs for the exemplary work in the field of monumental protection.

Budajenő Granary Exhibition pic


The industrial heritage Budajenő Granary and its surrounding was officially inaugurated on 11th April 2019. For the excellent renovation and revitalisation of the granary acknowledgment to: Balázs Csóka architect, Zsolt Vasáros and Sarolta Bihary interior design and decoration of the exhibition, Mónika Buella and Eszter Nagy landscaping.


Eiffel Art Studios will be opened to the public …

… on 14th April 2019 with a Mozart pasticcio (published 11/04/2019)

In August 2015 a Governmental Decree was issued to establish a new art studios and rehearsal centre as well as modernisation of the Hungarian State Opera. The art studios will utilise the disused building of the Eiffel Workshop, built between 1883-1886 based on the plans of János Feketeházy (1842-1927).

Feketeházy was working for two decades for the Hungarian State Railways (MÁV) and designed most railway bridges built before the First World War, platform hall of the Keleti Railway Station, railway turntables as well as the Liberty Bridge and the roofing of the Opera House. The industrial monument Eiffel Workshop (a former locomotive repair and maintenance facility) is situated on the same 22 hectares premise of the Northern Train Maintenance Depot where the Hungarian Museum of Transport will be relocated.

Eiffel Workshop pic


The 5-nave, 22,000 sqm Eiffel Workshop and two auxiliary buildings on a 6,7 hectares area will be the base of the rehearsal, production and storage centre of the Opera.

The entire complex will encompass an auditorium with 400 seats, a rehearsal stage of the same size as the stage of the Opera House, a music studio suitable for recordings, warehouses for theatre sets and props as well as for costumes, nine workshops, 200 parking spaces, training and office facilities and a visitor center.

The opening performance will be Mozart’s pasticcio (performances sewn together from excerpts from multiple musical works) from two fragmentary comedies L'oca del Cairo and Lo sposo deluso.

Eiffel Art Studios inside pic


You find more information on the website of the Hungarian State Opera.


Industrial Heritage Paprika Mill Caught Fire …

… in Kalocsa in the afternoon hours 27-03-2019 (posted 29 March, 2019)

Wednesday (27th March 2019) afternoon just before 4pm the industrial heritage paprika mill in Kalocsa caught fire. The fire was very fierce so fire brigades from Kalocsa, Solt and Kiskörös were alarmed and were working together to extinguish the fire. Fine ground paprika stocks and some heritage paprika milling machines were damaged. The firefighters put out the fire by 7pm. The origin of the fire was likely the dust filters, fire investigations are in progress.

Kalocsa Paprika Mill pic


Kalocsa is famous for its embroidery, and it is also best known for the Hungarian paprika. The ground paprika from Kalocsa is also a Hungarikum. The first paprika mill in Kalocsa was built in 1861 and in 1900 already 3 mills were working in the town. The mill that caught fire was built in the early 1900s and has a nicely decorated facade.

Paprika Roller Mill pic


You find more photos of the Paprika Mill on the website of Kalohírek.hu.


Diller Scofidio + Renfro won competition …

… to design the new Hungarian Museum of Transport (posted 01 March, 2019)

In December 2017 the Hungarian Government decided to relocate the Hungarian Museum of Transport from Városliget (City Park) to the premise of the disused Northern Train Maintenance Depot in Kőbánya (10th district of Budapest). Northern (Railway) Workshop, the predecessor of the Northern Train Maintenance Depot was among the first railway workshops of Hungary, which started operation in 1867. It’s most noteworthy building the so-called Eiffel Workshop (built between 1883-1886) will be utilised as art studios and rehearsal centre of the Hungarian State Opera.

The Museum of Transport will move into the Diesel Hall (built in 1962), another 22,000 sqm large workshop. To design the museum building and amenities an international design competition was announced on August 9, 2018. Thirteen Hungarian and international architectural firms submitted entries in the second round of the two-stage competition.

Diesel Hall pierpic


The award ceremony took place in the Diesel Hall on 28 February 2019. The winner of the competition was Diller Scofidio + Renfro. The world-famous American firm has designed several museums and brownfield redevelopments worldwide, one of their most famous works is the New York High Line.

The second prize went to the consortium of Reichen et Robert & Associés (FR), Ralph Appelbaum Associates (US) and PLANT Atelier Kis Péter (HU). The third prize was given to Építész Stúdió Kft and Honorary mentions were awarded to gmp International GmbH (DE), and a consortium of Foster & Partners (UK) and CÉH Zrt. (HU).

Visualisation pic


Assuming everything is on schedule the New Museum of Transport can be opened after 2022. You can see more visualisation of the plan here.


Budajenő Granary saved and received award …

… Facade of the Year 2018 on 8th November 2018 (posted 16 November 2018)


Austrian construction company Baumit created Facade of the Year Award to acknowledge outstanding facades constructed in Hungary. The competition for the Facade of the Year 2018 received 286 submissions from architects and general contractors in five categories: Single Family Home, Apartment Building and Non-Residential, and the two categories of Thermal Refurbishment and Monument Renovation. In the historic renovation category, the jury received and evaluated 35 entries. The winner of the Monument Renovation category was the Granary in Budajenő, the work of Balázs Csóka architect. He also received Pro Architectura award for this renovation few weeks before (on 24th October 2018).

Budajenő Granary pic


The granary was built end of the 18th century and was part of the manor of the Benedictines. In the Second World War it was seriously damaged, and the rear part of the building was torn down. During the communist era the granary was utilised for warehousing and manufacturing purposes, continuously degrading. After the change of regime (1989) it became an agricultural monument in 2005. Renovation works started in 2015 and completed in 2018. The ground floor will be utilised for conference and exhibition purposes. The second floor will function as a Youth & Pilgrim Hostel, the third flour and attic will host a permanent exhibition.


Drought revealed Margit Bridge central pier foundation…

… which you could walk around (posted 26 October, 2018)


In the past few weeks the water level of the Danube was extremely low in Hungary. Today morning (26 October 2018) in Budapest the water level was only 45 cm. (Till these days the lowest Danube level in Budapest was measured in 1947 at 51 cm). On many sections of the Danube the river bed became exposed. This happened to the central pier of Margit Bridge which you could walk around with dry shoes.

Margit Bridge pierpic


You could also go through the tunnel in the pier, which is usually under water. The tunnel has no function. When the bridge was built between 1872-1876 two cofferdams were used for the central pier another 2-2 for the two abutments and single cofferdams for the other four piers. The 2-2 piers of the central pillar (and the abutments) were connected by an arch, thus formed the tunnel. Between 1935-1937 the bridge and the piers were extended to the south direction.

Margit Bridge pier tunnel pic

European Heritage Days in Hungary…

… will be held on 15-16 September, 2018 (posted 27 August, 2018)


European Heritage Days (Kulturális Örökség Napjai) will be on 15-16 September, 2018 (SAT-SUN). In Hungary some 300 heritage sites, buildings, museums can be visited, including a dozen of industrial heritage facilities. Though most of the guided tours are available in Hungarian only, there are some tours in English as well. You can find English tours and programs here.

Heritage Days pic


In Budapest, the industrial heritage tours will conducted in Hungarian language except the Wekerle Walks. Places are open to visit: Underground Museum, Lechner Competence Center (former Tobacco Factory), Martsa Stone Carver Workshop, Wekerle Estate.


Ybl Pump House renovation finished...

… and got a new function as an exhibition hall (posted 23 May, 2018)


The elegant neo-Renaissance pump house designed by Miklós Ybl was built between 1875 and 1879. The pump station provided water supply for the Castle and from 1881 also for the Castle District. Unfiltered water was taken out directly from the Danube and was pumped through an artificial gravel bed deposited in an underground cistern system. Pumps were driven by steam engines, and the chimney of the boiler room was hidden in a nicely decorated tower. The pumping station ceased operation in 1905 and the building was used as concert hall, ball room or banquet hall. In WW2 the pump house suffered severe damage. In 1992 the building was renovated and worked as a casino for some 15 years.

Ybl pump house pic

In 2016 the Ybl Pump House was acquired (for 10.5 million euros) by PADI Pallas Athéné Domus Innovationis, foundation of the Hungarian National Bank (MNB). According to the plans it would have been renovated from 600 million Forint and would’ve been reopened for public in autumn 2017. Finally, the building was handed over 18th May 2018, and restoration costs reached near 1 billion Forint.

Ybl pump house cafe pic

The pump house received a new function as an exhibition hall and was reopened under the name Ybl Creative House Buda. The nicely restored building contains exhibition halls, community spaces and a richly decorated cafe with a terrace.

Ybl pump house ceiling pic

The ceiling of the terrace is decorated with scgraffito technique, a masterpiece of Róbert Scholtz. The stairway to the basement level contains a pixelated portrait of Miklós Ybl, artwork of Zsolt Áron Majoros.

Ybl pump house portrait pic

The opening exhibition displays the sculptures of Gábor Miklós Szőke a talented and creative artist famous for his bird’s sculptures. The exhibition closes 10 June 2018. Here you can see more photos and visit the website of Ybl Creative House Buda.


66 m tall chimney demolished today ...

… in a controlled explosion in Győr (posted 23 March, 2018)


Today (23 March 2018) at 11am the 66 m tall chimney of the former oil factory in Győr was demolished in a controlled explosion. Originally it was planned to be demolished end of November 2016, but several architects and locals demanded to save it as the last iconic remnant of the oil factory.

The brick chimney expanded by a water tank was built in 1911 and though it was not listed as an industrial monument many notable architects argued to save it.

Győr oil factory chimney pic

Győr oil factory chimney demolition pic


You can see more photos and a video of the explosion.


World Water Day 22th March, 2018…

… excellent opportunity to see the Kőbánya Water Reservoir (posted 19 March, 2018)


In 1993, the United Nations General Assembly officially designated March 22 as World Water Day. The day focuses attention on the importance of universal access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene facilities in developing countries. The day also focuses on advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

On the World Water Day, and on 23-24 March as well, the Budapest Waterworks opens the Kőbánya Water Reservoir. You can visit the reservoir with registration only, on 22 March and 23 March morning hours. From 23 March afternoon you can visit the reservoir without registration. The reservoir is a masterpiece of brickworks, well worth a visit.

Kőbánya Water Reservoir pic


You can see more information and photos of the Kőbánya Water Reservoir


Industrial Heritage Warehouse Caught Fire …

… in Budapest in the morning hours 07-03-2018 (posted 07 March, 2018)


Today (7th March 2018) morning the warehouse building of the industrial monument Concordia Mill caught fire. Concordia Mill was built in 1866 and was the first of the five steam mills on Soroksári út, in Ferencváros.

Thirteen fire engines and 45 firefighters were working to extinguish the fire. Since the warehouse was in an office and residential area and very close to Zwack distillery firemen were fighting bravely to put out the fire.

Concordia Mill Fire pic


It’s worth to mention that in its history the mill had burnt down 3 times (in 1892, 1902 and 1923). You find here more pictures on the fire.


Open Days of EU Developments 2018…

… between 1-31 March all over Hungary (posted 2 March, 2018)


Open Days of EU Developments will take place between 1-31 March in Hungary. On these open days several castles, visitor centres, spa complexes, museums, thematic parks all over the country offer programs and guided visits, many times for free or at discounted price.
Those venues participate in the program which were developed with the aid of EU funds.

Two noteworthy brownfield rehabilitation projects are also among the venues: the National Film History Theme Park (Fúvógépház) together with Digital Power Plant in Ózd and the Reptár Aviation Museum in Szolnok.

Blowing Engine House pic

Digital Power Plant Outside pic

Digital Power Plant Inside pic

Indóház pic

Reptár Museum pic


The official page of the Open Days of EU Developments is here.



In the Spotlight

Buda Roller Mill (Budai Hengermalom)

... in the Spotlight in 03/2018 (posted:27/03/2018)

The history of steam mills in Budapest started in 1839, when the Pesti Hengermalom Részvénytársaság (Pest Roller Mill plc) was established based on the proposition of Count István Széchenyi, who was also a shareholder of the company. Though the first steam-driven mill in Hungary was put in operation in 1836 in Sopron, actually, the Pest Roller Mill was the first steam mill using state of the art machinery of cylindrical rollers (the mill in Sopron was using traditional stone milling technology).

The Pest Roller Mill was built on an estate between 1839-1841 in Lipótváros, which was mostly an industrial area that time, and in the following decades another six mills were put in operation in Lipótváros and Újlipótváros. The Pest Roller Mill was standing just few hundred meters NE from the Parliament building (built 1885-1904). Since Budapest was growing fast around the Millennium, the factories, steam mills in the area had to cease operation and they were closed down or moved to other locations.

In 1907 the shareholders’ meeting of the Pest Roller Mill plc decided to build a new roller mill on the Buda side at Lágymányos, which was an unused, underdeveloped area at the turn of the century. The flour mill was constructed between 1909-1910 and commenced full-scale operation in 1911. The same year the mill in Lipótváros was demolished.


Budai Roller Mill pic

The mill was using the most up-to-date technology and grain was stored in steel reinforced concrete silos designed by Szilárd Zielinski.

Due to high construction and investments costs, and the decline of the mill industry in the 1910s, the Hengermalom mill was partially (1916) then fully acquired by Első Budapesti Gőzmalom Részvénytársaság and merged into it in 1928.

The mill was nationalised in 1948 and was in operation as a state-owned company under the name of Budai Malom (Buda Mill). After the change of regime (1989) in Hungary the Budai Malom was privatised in the 1990s and was working as Budai Malomipari Kft. until 2005 when it terminated the milling operation. Currently the buildings of the mill are utilised for office and warehousing purposes.

See more photos here...