architecture : urban : visual culture

Coffee, view, exhibition, dome - the project of Daniel Menczelesz

The application of Daniel Menczelesz won purchasing, not surprisingly, since he payed careful attention to the built environment of Gellért Hill. 

Gellért Hill

Gellért Hill, just like the green areas nearby (Kopaszigát, Tabán, Horváth-Garden, Vérmező, Városmajor and Zugliget), has an important recreational role, so its built environment is very important. Gellért Hill’s connection with the Danube is impossible due to the steep, rocky hillside. The two bridges of the Danube; the Elisabeth Bridge and the Liberty Bridge mark the most obvious possible approaches for tourists and citizens. In addition, there is a parking lot right next to the Citadel, which offers the most popular access by tourists, as they can enjoy the breathtaking panorama without walking. But this has a serious price!

There are lot of buses parking in a small place, this is an unacceptably heavy environmental burden for the Gellért Hill Nature Reserve. This creates an unworthy situation for the nature reserve. The unfavorable situation caused by the hundreds of buses parking there could be solved by moving the transport hub to the still vacant plot bounded by Hegyalja Road and Tigris Street. From there, the Citadel can be reached in a few minutes walk with minimal difference in level. I also recommend to operate bus number 27 more frequently by the Center for Budapest Transport and the establishment of a new bus stop at the Citadel.

The Citadel

The fort built on the highest point of the Gellért Hill (and also the so-called Csillagda built previously at the same place) has a history. The reason and function of its construction - keeping the people of Budapest under control and intimidation - has changed and has been modified over time. However, regarding its construction it remains a fortress.

The building consists of three main units; The Main Fortress, the Big Courtyard and the Eastern Rondella. Considering the persistance of the Citadel, the museum and the Panorama café have an adequate function. The entrance of the building remains without any change at its original site, on the northern side. From there, the way is leading up in a ramp ascending to the middle of the building, which is more elegant, than the older one. Turning right we can find the Museum and on the left the Panorama Café and the Southern and Northern Viewpoints. We can get to the floor of the Panorama Café and the Northern Viewpoint, which would have a slab made from glass, through glass-steel stairs, so the banquettes can still be seen below it.


The shelter currently located in the Great Court yard would be dismantled, so there would be a continuous woody, bushy green area in the yard. The Museum wich has an optional topic would be in the Main Fortress. The partial demolition of the original transportation hub and covering the Main Fortress' yard with a glass dome creates a large space. An elegant pierced "floating stairway" designed at the focal point of the Fortress' Yard, provides vertical traffic for visitors. Both on the ground floor and on the second floor the periodic exhibition halls are inside, whereas the permanent exhibition halls are located on the outer ring. The most exciting exhibition hall is on the second floor of the permanent exhibition. The „three-dimensional virtual walk” hall, which looks onto the Buda Castle, Buda and Pest, has a glazed exterior wall. Visitors can use special glasses to roll back the wheel of time to see the morphological development of the city of Budapest from a chosen date (or historical period).

Dániel Menczelesz

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