10 November 2011
An independent downtown project of real estate development company Horizon Development
By the name of Eiffel palace the former headquarters of Pesti Hírlap – located at the corner of Stollár Béla and Bajcsy-Zsilinszky streets in the 5th district – is being resuscitated under the development of Horizon Development. The property will be rented by widely known advisory firm PwC. When selecting the rental it was especially important that the building be suitable both for the most advanced environment friendly technologies and PwC’s needs.
The legendary downtown headquarters of Pesti Hírlap is being reshaped by Horizon Development. Behind the eclectic facade of the 1890s a state-of-the-art office building is being constructed which fulfils all the needs related to contemporary living. No similar development has been previously carried out in the Central Eastern European region which makes the project of Horizon Development exemplary for the future.
The project’s success is also indicated by the rental contract recently signed by Horizon Development and advisory firm PwC under which the high-class tenant will rent three quarters of the building as an exclusive office building form the beginning of 2014. The remaining areas are still waiting for new tenants. In the transaction PwC was represented by Jones Lang LaSalle.
Unique development – Retaining value and environmental awareness
International real estate developers had previously made several attempts to make use of the exceptionally well-situated property without any success. Under the development led by Horizon Development, however, retaining value and renovation are both carried out at the highest-level, thus enriching Budapest with another modern office building.
The real estate developers emphasize the importance of creating an environment conscious downtown building by preserving and restoring the special details of exquisite architectural and aesthetic value. In addition to the facade elements, such values include the exquisite cast iron structure of the interior main yard and staircase of the building. The majority of the facade elements and details deemed especially important by Horizon Development have been completely destroyed by now but with the help of old drawings and photographs available the original facade can be restored, though through intensive and fastidious reconstructions works of the highest quality.
In accordance with the developers’ commitment to environment awareness and PwC’s requirements, the office building will be certified according to the BREEAM method.
The history of Eiffel Palace building
The five-story building with a facade overlooking three streets situated at 78 Bajcsy-Zsilinszky Road was built in 1893 based on the plans of Flóris Korb and Kálmán Giergl and on behalf of the Légrády brothers to house the publications office and printing house of Pesti Hírlap, one of Budapest’s most significant daily newspaper. The stories above the publications office and the printing house served as dwelling houses, creating a functional complexity that made the building different from all the other similar buildings of Budapest. Its significance was also marked by its ornamental appearance; its sizeable and richly embellished facade – topped with a high tower – formed an emphatic corner of the area in front of Nyugati Railway Station. Unfortunately, the corner tower has been destroyed during the last century, leaving the roof structure quite featureless.
Due to the extraordinary renovation works the exterior of the building will regain its original look, however, its interiors and technical structure will be designed according to the strictest 21st century requirements. Based on the decision of Horizon Development, the special details of unique architectural and aesthetic value will be completely restored by demolition and reconstruction works, where necessary. The building comprises leasable area of 14,000 square meters, a parking garage and a restaurant will also be set up behind the ground floor two-story portal. The expected date of completion is 2013.
The professional leaders and owners of Horizon Development are not unfamiliar to the surrounding area of Nyugati Railway Station as Eiffel Square Office Building is also about to be completed in cooperation with co-developers. This year the Eiffel Square Project won best runner up position in the Best Office Development category in the Prix d’Excellence Awards of FIABCI, the International Real Estate Development Federation which was established more than 60 years ago. In constructing the Eiffel Palace, developers focus on high-quality performance and acknowledge the growing importance of the principles of environmental consciousness.
About Horizon Development:
In 2006, the owners of Horizon Development already owned a number of strategic plots in Budapest when they set up the company in order to develop the already existing sites, finding new opportunities and create long-term partnerships. References of the company and its owners include projects as the Eiffel Square Office Building, the Promenade Gardens Office Building project at Váci Street or the Marczibányi Sports Centre. Horizon Development also participated in the preparation and advisory works related to future projects in the surrounding regions.
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