The Hungarian Museum of Transport was established in 1899, based on the transportation exhibition of the Millennium Fair, a national exhibition in 1896. The museum building at Városliget (City Park) was badly damaged in World War II, and was reopened after its renovation in 1966. While the Museum played a key role in presenting the technical and cultural heritage of Hungary, the building was not suitable for housing its expanding collections and archives, restoration workshops and an up-to-date museum infrastructure. Meanwhile, as a result of institutional integration, the Museum became part of The Hungarian Museum of Science, Technology and Transport, which has several satellite institutions across the country, and is under state administration.
After commissioning extensive research considering several options, the Hungarian Government approved a new location for the Museum at the former Northern Maintenance Depot of the Hungarian State Railways, in Kőbánya, Budapest’s 10th district. The site with its exceptionally rich industrial history is ideal for an engaging, characteristic exhibition venue, while also providing space for storage, workshops and other facilities.
The core mission of the Museum is to present the development of transportation and mobility in Hungary from the first innovations of the early 1800s Reform Era to today. This requires a complex interdisciplinary approach that expands beyond transport and technical history to economy, social history, anthropology and microhistory in a local and international context. The exhibition will use community transportation to show how social questions inspired sustainable, innovative and future-shaping answers in the past as well as today, adapting to the changing needs of society.
Rather than focusing on objects, the new exhibition will put the personal, human perspective in its centre, allowing exhibited items to become parts of the unfolding story of technical development. The presentation of the history of mobility, just like mobility itself, should serve city dwellers, city users and visitors. On the new site, the Museum will be able to carry out its vision of becoming a place of vivid discussions, exchange and events: it will offer programs and experiences to families, children, students and seniors, besides welcoming local and international tourists, and transportation enthusiasts.
The construction of the new facilities is scheduled between 2020 and 2022. To find the best architectural proposals, the Museum launches an international competition, inviting ambitious, visionary and committed offices, teams and consortiums from all over the world.