Vacant City

Experiments in inclusive urban transformation in the Netherlands and Hungary

The kék – Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre recently published Vacant City, a the result of multiple encounters between Hungarian and Dutch practitioner working with vacancy and reuse.

The economic crisis brought about a new paradigm in architecture and planning. Instead of serving large-scale investments and targeting fictional customers, the new development logic gives preference to the reuse of existing buildings and spaces by helping them to gradually adapt to new functions and accommodate new users.

Vacant City

Dutch practitioners were at the forefront of experimenting with new approaches to vacant properties and community-led urban regeneration. By pioneering innovation in design, policy and management to address the problem of vacancy, they established models that inspired like-minded initiatives across the world.

Between 2012 and 2015, the kék – Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre invited to Budapest a dozen Dutch practitioners, whose work is organized around the reuse of vacant buildings and areas. By presenting these practices, connecting them to their Budapest counterparts and creating situations of formal and informal exchange, kék opened new spaces for thought in the Hungarian architecture, planning and deve- lopment culture and in civil society. Vacant City is the result of these encounters, assembling the key thoughts and experiences of the program’s 3 years.

Involved city makers
Levente Polyak
KÉK, Budapest
Júlia Oravecz
Design manager / KÉK Lakatlan Project
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