Center for Ecotourism by the Central-Tisza
Nagykörű is the largest cherry-growing area in the country with more than 200 hectares of cultivated land, which is why Nagykörű is called the cherry garden of Hungary. The cherry blossom is a special festival in the town, which attracts many tourists, including a large number of foreign visitors. For the ones who would like to explore the area, 7 mainland and 2 waterway tourist routes start from the center of the settlement.
The first phase of the design was about to decide what kind of building would be the best to represent the small settlement of 1500 inhabitants and the values of the village and its community for the visitors. As a starting point, we wanted to design a modern building that meets the 21st century demands and – continuing the traditions – is inspired by the set of forms typical of the settlement and the villages in the Tisza region. Thus the building of the reception center was designed with respect to the architectural style of the nearby settlements.
The intention of the designers was to demonstrate and justify that traditional construction methods and forms – if they are filled with adequate function and the demands of the new, 21st century function are taken into account – will result in a modern building that can be a dominant element of the settlement's life.
The main entrance of the building is marked by the typical bulky columns of the so called „stolen” porch. The massive circular columns gave stability and prestige to the houses of Kunság. The porch ends, as it is mainly typical in the area of Szolnok, are open. The building’s façade facing the courtyard, which runs down to the house end, protects the interior garden as an “embracing arm”. The interiors communicate with the resting garden through a verandah-like glazed façade that provides an all-year use.
The Visitor Center can connect several different services such as water tourism, fishing tourism, hiking, and bicycle tourism. There is a lecture (screening) room with the capacity of approx. 30-40 people, appropriate for organizing or hosting interactive lectures and activities. The room aims to provide place for introductory lectures for both the village people and the target groups of eco-tourism (school classes, families, tourists, etc.), and for the screening of short films. In addition to serving the cultural needs of the community, the facility can accommodate professional events as well. In recent years, by organizing community programs, exhibitions, festivals and entertainments in the visitor center, the house has indeed become the organizing force and driver of the settlement’s life.