The Last Days of a Modernist Town Center in Budapest?

date. 2019

stye. Longform

longform ● architecture ● journalism

Kelenföld Városközpont (Town Center), a modernist building complex built in the 1970s was designed to serve as the commercial and community center of Kelenföld’s new housing estate in Budapest’s district XI.


For generations of Kelenföldians, the Town Center was the heart and soul of the neighborhood that boasted a modern cinema, a cultural center, a market, numerous restaurants and retailer shops. Times have changed and the once busy, bustling place today gives the impression of being a memento of a bygone era.


My article aims to give a comprehensive yet subjective overview of the structure's past and present role in Kelenföld's life. Also, it seeks to raise questions about its future.  The story of the Town Center demonstrates a good example of how buildings of the same era, built with a strong vision of their functionality, have an uncertain future worldwide.