The entire architectural concept of our proposal is based on the principles of sustainability and circular architecture. We believe that putting sustainability and environmental considerations into practice through intelligent, careful planning does not entail making compromises in usability or economic disadvantages. Indeed, this can create a new kind of aesthetics in the way buildings are developed, in landscaping, and in the façades, use of materials and interior design of buildings which amounts to more in content and history than the sterile aesthetics of creating something new of the moment. The development, the architectural formation and the use of materials are all the consequence and manifestation of these principles in our design.
The revitalisation of the area allows new functions to be incorporated into the urban fabric through the planned buildings and redevelopments providing opportunities for creating modern workplaces and spaces for immersive study and community life, together with an inspiring environment that helps students learn and prepare. These should be an integral part of city life and complement the university’s facility on the adjacent block.
As well as meeting these needs in full, our proposal places great emphasis on sustainability, environmental awareness and economy, be it in terms of construction or operating costs. Our concept was guided by recycling to the highest possible degree, which as a spin-off produced the best building parameters, spacious inner green spaces and a true university campus feeling.
One of the most important criteria of planning was the integration of the new campus into the urban fabric. The layout of the axes between the retained, redesigned and new-build free-standing blocks of buildings provided an excellent opportunity for this. In this way, the proposed development opens towards the urban fabric in all four directions of the block. The openness of the campus creates an urban presence with an educational focus, effectively attracting pedestrians and cyclists. The inner areas with covered and open spaces, the restaurant and café terraces serving allcomers, the green picnic and relaxation gardens, the street workout court and the shaded tree-lined walkways create liveable and high-quality integrated urban spaces.
Providing forward-looking examples for everyone is highly important in the fight against climate change. Numerous sustainable public buildings have been created and have become symbols of their respective cities. The new campus of Pázmány Péter Catholic University can reinforce this trend. In adapting existing buildings for reuse, we have striven to keep demolition to the minimum and to find the ideal balance in the matrix of economy, operability, functionality and environmental awareness, and thus to achieve the best solution in terms of urban architecture. The choice of materials and equipment with a longer renewal cycle was made in the spirit of sustainability. In designing the campus, special attention was paid to ensuring that the construction produced the lowest possible CO₂ emissions. When analysing sustainability, the amount of CO₂ saved by retaining existing buildings and the cost of compensating the emissions associated with the construction of new buildings were quantified. Of the eight demolishable buildings in the planning area, we intend to keep two and repurpose them as a hall of residence and a library. As the production of building materials causes significant emissions, repurposing two buildings of this size rather than demolishing and creating new ones will spare the city from being subjected to a huge environmental impact.