architecture : urban : visual culture

Galyatető lookout tower won Architizer A+ award

It's official: the lookout tower designed by Nartarchitects won the Public Prize of Architizer A+ Award in the category of Preservation. The Architizer A+Awards is the largest awards program focused on promoting and celebrating the year’s best architecture and products. Congratulations! 

Te award's mission is to nurture the appreciation of meaningful architecture in the world and champion its potential for a positive impact on everyday life. Imagine your best work in front of a global audience of 100+ million

During the evolution of the Hungarian hiking culture of the 19-20th century there has been a significant change in the number and in the needs of tourists, leading to the need of substantial interventions due to the evolving infrastructure at the tourist destinations. Both the Nagyszálló (Grand Hotel) of Galyatető and the belonging lookout tower are peak performances of this prosperity. Since the construction of the tower in 1939, it turned into an extremely dilapidated, catastrophic structural condition. The architects established a tourist center that was rethought in an innovative way.

The tower does not archaize, neither the historical and contemporary precedents in the architecture of lookout towers nor the architecture of the previously built elements did evoke nostalgia in the architects. It was built from materials that could ensure durability in the mountain weather conditions. The trees surrounding the clearing overgrew the lookout level of the original building, therefore, as the main element of the extension, this level was elevated in the form of a reinforced concrete addition.

The reinforced concrete structure continues inside the lower part made from stone, and it is connected to a massive new concrete foundation which stabilizes the building of changed scale. The corner columns of the steel structure, supporting a square layout, outline the new contour of the lookout tower. After the significant structural reconstruction, the retained outer wall also plays a new role. The double mass of the inner core and the encircling steel stair-system is closed with a fine, rare woven stainless steel mesh on the external plane of the stairs.


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