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Buda’s “mushroom” hub sprouts afresh


  • Bagi László

16/10/2014 2.00am

As one of the finishing touches in the renovation of Moricz Zsigmond Square in central Újbuda, the circular "Gomba" building – designed by József Schall in 1942 – is finally renewed both inside and out, providing premises for a BKK office, a café, and a bistro/gallery. It is not an exaggeration to say that without the refurbishment, the building would have collapsed.

During the recovery of the Gomba ("mushroom" in Hungarian) exterior during springtime, the architects of the
Hetedik Műterem

design team


the circlular structure of the monumental building, which had been in ruins for years. The decorated well

in the middle of the courtyard

was also renewed. The elegant building is characterized by slim columns, curving lines, and great glass surfaces.
It can also be seen as a sort of pavilion

encircling a quiet but sunny area that

might become a popular meeting point in the future.

Photo: László Balkányi - We Love Budapest

Photo: László Balkányi - We Love Budapest

During the inauguration of the building,
Újbuda Mayor

Tamás Hoffmann

highlighted that altogether, the completion of
metro line 4,

the renewal of Bikás Park, and the renovation of
Móricz Zsigmond Square

and the Gomba are all important cornerstones of Újbuda's rebirth. Looking at pictures taken of the Gomba before the renovation, there is ample reason to be proud of these works.

Photo: The State Of The Building Before The Renovation

Photo: The State Of The Building Before The Renovation

In one of the three premises we

find a BKK office, which provides

a new, more comfortable environment for public-transportation administration, be it buying monthly tickets, arranging to use

MOL Bubi bikes , or simply asking for information.

Photo: László Balkányi - We Love Budapest

Photo: László Balkányi - We Love Budapest

The other two premises are occupied by a café and a bistro, which will

also function

as a gallery. The kitchen of the latter is not yet open, but we already know that they will serve soups, pastas, and salads. The works of a painter living nearby, Dániel László, will be exhibited on the walls. In the café, you will have a chance to buy coffees, teas, and pastries made on the spot; we're certain that

this locale will be

frequented frequently by those crossing the square.

Photo: László Balkányi - We Love Budapest

Photo: László Balkányi - We Love Budapest

In conclusion, the renewed building turned out to be quite elegant, both on the exterior and interior. The clear organization of the inner spaces and the lines of the furniture are in harmony with the layout and the slight curvature of the glass and the blocks of concrete, and the

moderate colors. The circle of neon lights already forms

an important part of the cityscape. It will probably take until next spring before the terrace of the central courtyard

will fill with life, but the interior of the building is already open for use if we want to buy a public-transport pass, or have a morning coffee while looking at the buzzing square. Here is a good example of the renewal of a "ruin"; we can only encourage other districts to follow in the footsteps of this project, which will be good for the whole city.

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