Architect: TIMA Zoltán
The two-story high building of monolithic appearance, topped with a green roof, blends into the hillside bordering No.71 main road on the west. The estern side of the building faces a newly established urban square in front of the main entrance, with large, opened glass walls. The congress center consists of flexible spaces, that can host conferences, theater performances and other events as well.
The almost two-hectare area of the former Huray Street Market, later a parking lot, is the site of the congress center, which can be used as a venue for different events. An underground car park for 287 cars is located under the building, which is partly a public parking area. The site is bordered by No.71 main road from the west and Huray István Street from the east; the 6-8-meter difference between their levels formed a landcaped slope originally. Reproducing this sight became part of the architectural concept. The two-story high building sits on the building line of Huray Street, its main entrance faces a new, paved urban square. The monolithic block of the building seems almost transparent from the square, one can look in the entrance hall through the large, opened glass surfaces. The stone clad, solid parts of the facade hide different functions. All the necessary functions have been integrated into the mass of the building; the location of the service yard is indicated only by an upward gap. The building is covered by a green roof, which blends into the natural hillside that borders the main road. Access to the underground car park is provided from the main road, from both directions, via a ramp cut into the green slope. Delivery vehicles, buses and taxis approach the building from Huray Street.
The underground car park occupies a larger area than the superstructure; one part of it operates as a public parking area, the other part is used by guests of the events. Pedestrian exits connect it with both the public space and the interior of the congress center. The building is multifunctional, so it consists mainly of large spaces which can flexibly accommodate different events, conferences, dinner parties. Three main groups of spaces can be distinguished: the entrance hall with the connecting exhibition area, the conference hall-auditorium, and the conference rooms.
Guests arrive from Huray Street or the underground car park at the 650 m2, two-story high entrance hall. The recessed glass walls enhance the connection of the hall to the external urban square, that has intensive pedestrian traffic in summer from the direction of Lake Balaton and the downtown. The entrance hall can be used as the venue of exhibitions and stand-up receptions, it is flexibly connected to a 380 m2 exhibition area. There are two conference rooms opening from the exhibition hall, they can accommodate 60 and 110 persons respectively, and serve as lecture rooms during exhibitions. The two rooms can also be joined. Smooth running of the different events is served by cloakrooms and toilet blocks on both sides of the entrance hall, as well as the café-patisserie and the ticket office located on the Huray Street side. These latter can also be accessed from the outside, from the direction of the walkway.
There is an elegant, straight staircase leading from the two-story high entrance hall up to the 650+36 seating capacity conference hall-auditorium, which forms the core of the building. It has entrances from the ground floor and the landing of the staircase as well. The auditorium, with its inclined floor, is used mainly for conferences, it has a slightly elevated podium/stage and built-in AV technology. In addition, it can accommodate theater performances and concerts as well, supported by the surrounding service areas. Stage sets can be transported through the service yard to the manipulation area behind the stage. On the right side, there are individual and group dressing rooms and a small lounge. The front part of the auditorium can be moved separately: if it is raised flush with the stage, the stage area gets increased, so it can accommodate dance performances; if it is lowered below the level of the first row of seats, it can be used as an orchestra pit. The gallery, the technical rooms and the interpretation booths are accessed from the upper floor. The western gallery can also serve as a VIP box, with a private lobby and separate access from the underground car park.
There are four conference rooms, equipped with AV systems, on the upper floor of the building, each accomodates 78 persons. They can be rented for lectures, trainings, and smaller conferences. The rooms are accessed from the entrance hall through the main staircase or by lift. The conference rooms can be joined to form a 300-person capacity hall.
The catering kitchen is located on the ground floor, supply is transported through the service yard. The kitchen caters to the receptions, dinner parties and other stand-up or seated events organized in different parts of the building. The technical and mechanical rooms, necessary for the operation of the building, are located on the upper floor, below the hill covered by the green roof. An important aspect of the design was to provide complete accessibility both in access from the outside and in the interior of the building.
The exterior of the building is dominated by three materials: glass, stone, and plants, which cover the ‘fifth facade’, the green roof. The solid parts of the facade are clad with limestone; the cladding consists of one-story high units of different width, imitating large stone blocks, enhancing the monolithic appearance of the building. The glass facade is an aluminium curtain wall system without thermal bridge. The openings of the mechanical yard and the mechanical room are hidden by a uniform row of louvres running along the facade.
Location: Balatonfüred, Huray István utca
Architect: TIMA Zoltán
Associate architects: BODA István, SKRABÁK Zoltán, SKRABÁK-NAGY Marianna, PERNESZ Ágnes, MOLNÁR J. Tibor
Structural engineer: POHL Ákos (Ceos Kft.)
HVAC engineer: MAKÁRY Csaba (Agorex Kft.)
Electrical engineers: MÁRAMAROSI András, RITZL András, BORSÁNYI Károly (Signum-Plan Mérnökiroda Kft.), KAPITOR György (Zone-Plan Kft.)
Interior architect: GÖDE András (Kroki Kft.)
Landscape architect: MOHÁCSI Sándor (S73 Kft.)
Area: 14.580 m2