Developments with a combined total of more than 30 billion HUF are being earmarked for a regeneration project in Békéscsaba, thanks to an agreement signed between Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and Mayor Péter Szarvas.
Prime Minister Orban said that in Hungary Békéscsaba is seen not as a city in need of assistance, but rather as a city of unexplored opportunities.
Next year’s budget also features funding for construction of the M44 motorway leading into the district. János Lázár, the minister heading the Prime Minister’s Office, has pledged to ensure that the work will begin at the end of the summer.
Prime Minister Orbán told the press assembled at the signing that there is no scope for raising international funding for the project, and therefore it will be financed from the Hungarian budget “down to the last penny”.
The Prime Minister added that he had agreed with Mayor Szarvas on construction of a refrigeration facility, for which 12 billion HUF has been allocated. Also, that 5.2 billion HUF has been allocated for the enlargement of the market hall, which the Prime Minister concluded would be Hungary’s largest market place.
The existing handball arena will be remodeled, and a new 3.2 billion HUF multifunctional sports centre will be built next to it. A swimming complex with a fifty-meter pool and a practice pool will be built from an allocation of 3 billion HUF, and 900 million HUF will be provided for a volleyball academy devoted to training a reliable supply of future talent.
CsabaPark will be enlarged from funding of 1 billion HUF, and the airfield – which is operated by the municipality, but is owned by the state – will be developed from an allocation of 4.1 billion HUF. In the first stage of this the runway will be enlarged to make it suitable for receiving larger aircraft.
Prime Minister Orbán also stated that a task force will be set up in order to develop a cultural quarter named after the 19th-century painter Mihály Munkácsy, the exact brief for which has yet to be discussed.
Plans for the refurbishment and enlargement of the city’s theatre and its homeless shelter have been suspended for the time being, he said. The Prime Minister reminded his audience that after 2010 the Government had taken over debt of 9.5 billion HUF from Békéscsaba, and between 2010 and 2013 development funds worth 65 billion HUF were channeled into the city.
Mayor Szarvas concluded that the agreement will have an impact on the entire Central Békés region, and the towns of Gyula and Békés. He hopes that the developments will enable Békéscsaba to join the ranks of successful, modern European cities. After the press conference he said that, in his view, the projects outlined may be implemented within one to four years.