5 architects to remember Budapest

MIKLÓS YBL

1814-1891
The architect that shaped 19th-century Budapest studied in Paris and Munich. His style gradually developed: his older work is an example of Romanticism, his later of Neo-Renaissance. His two Budapest masterpieces are the Opera House (1884) and St Stephen’s Cathedral, aka the Basilica (1905). He was also elected to the Upper House.

Imre Steindl

1839-1902
Steindl was the son of a Pest silversmith, and studied architecture in Budapest and in Vienna. When he was 44 he proposed a design for the Parliament building and got the job. He became the manager of the project, but died six weeks before it was completed. He died partly of disillusionment: younger critics disliked his backward-looking design.

BÉLA LAJTA

1873-1920
This son of a successful Jewish tailor became the modernist, trend-setting master architect of pre-WWI Budapest. His most important projects include the Institute for the Blind, the Parisiana Cabaret (now New Theatre), the Jewish Grammar School (now Radnóti Gimnázium). If you’re interested: admission to the online Béla Lajta Archive is free.

GÁBOR ZOBOKI

1963-
Zoboki is a classical musician and an architect. He designed the Palace of Arts, with the Bartók Hall inside, and also some major office buildings, for example for Telenor and Nokia. He’s also one of the architects of the Corcin Quarter project, and of the National Dance Theatre, which is to be completed in 2019.

SÁNDOR FINTA

1973 -
If not for anything else, he will be remembered as the architect of the two riverbank stations of metro line 4; he said he was inspired by the structure of the human bone. Finta was chief architect of the City of Budapest 2012-2015 project, but was forced out because he was too much dedicated to community-based urban design, which was not appreciated by the mayor.