Hungarian Lookout Tower Wins American Architecture Prize – Galya-lookout Tower Got the Gold
A fascinating scenic view appears from the top of the lookout tower of Galyatető in the Mátra mountains. What’s more, it offers a rest-house service for the tired hikers for the night. The brilliant building got the American Architecture Gold Prize. The multifunctional lookout tower was extended and reconstructed by the plans of two professors of the Moholy-Nagy Universtiy of Arts and Design Budapest, Csaba Kovács and Áron Vass-Eysen.
The project is located in the center of the 1100-kilometer long “Blue” national tourist route which passes through the North of Hungary between hills. The look-out tower is an innovative and contextual impact on Galyateto, that will enhance the experience of the second highest peak of Matra mountain’s location and nature. It is a found object made of stone. The materials used are quite puritan, the harmony of the extant stone quarry and exposed concrete prevails in the building’s reconstruction and extension. Together the old and new materials create a contemporary built environment.
Through the years the trees have grown above the building’s top level, it craved for heightening. The top level was elevated in the form of a reinforced concrete addition. In the inner core of the extension’s concrete structure are 3 bivouac shelters lighted with colourful circular windows, creating a special atmoshpere for the hikers who hanker to get some rest through their journey. After the significant structural reconstruction, the retained outer wall also plays a new role. The double mass of the inner core and the encircling steel stair-system is closed with a fine, rare woven stainless steel mesh on the external plane of the stairs.
The lookout tower of Galyatető is now one of the biggest in Hungary after the designers extended it from 55ft to 98ft.