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Feb 27, 2020

Municipal assembly of Budapest bans further construction within Liget Project

László Baán recently asked Mayor Karácsony to withdraw the proposal and provide an opportunity for “proper talks” on the Liget Project.

The municipal assembly of Budapest has banned any further construction within the Liget Project.

Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony stated that the ban is aimed at “preventing irreversible changes to the city’s largest public park” so that “it can continue in its function as a public park”.

Karácsony said the city and the government had conflicting positions on the Liget Project, which involves plans to build a complex of museums in the City Park, and suggested that he saw no way for a consensus.

On November 5 last year, the city assembly denied support for all components of the Liget Project which were not yet under construction at that time, including a new National Gallery. It decided that the City Park should be renewed in a way that it retains its primary function as a public park.

We recently revealed how László Baán, the commissioner in charge of the Liget project, had asked Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony to withdraw a proposed ban on the construction of buildings in the area that have not yet received a permit.

In an open letter addressed to the mayor, Baán said that as the law stands, the ban would end up curtailing green developments such as the refurbishment and expansion of park areas. Baán wrote that not a single tree or bush would be planted and not a single square meter of green space could be refurbished under the ban.

The commissioner criticized the metropolitan council leadership for failing to discuss the impact of the proposal with the asset manager designated in the law on City Park or with Városliget, the state-owned company in charge of the project.

Baán said it was “rather absurd” that “after declaring absolute priority for green developments” the Budapest leadership, “right in the middle of a climate emergency”, had submitted a proposal that would result in a ban on mainly green developments.

Baán asked Karácsony to withdraw the proposal and provide an opportunity for “proper talks” on the Liget project.

Photo credit: Portfolio