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Discovering underground line M4

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Teljes táv: 4,8 km
Össz. emelkedő:  38 m
Össz. lejtő: -30 m
Magasság max.: 123 m
Magasság min.: 100 m

Start: Fővám Square

How to get there:

by car: paid parking in nearby streets
by public transport: underground line M4; tram: 2, 47, 48, 49; bus 15, 115; troli: 83

Opening underground line 4 has brought elegance and style to the world of underground transport in Budapest. Újbuda has 5 stations where high quality contemporary architecture is represented. This tour will take you each and surface level of the stations will also be discovered.

Two of the stations gained an international award and make everyday commute an artistic experience for locals.

The underground line crosses District 11 in Buda between Kelenföld Railway Station and St Gellért Square, which is half of the 7.5-km-long line.

The idea of constructing the line rose in the 1970s, however, with a different route. Studies and plans from the late 1990s were made practically for the final route and the foundation stone was laid in 2006 in Etele Square. Construction was a focus of extraordinary media attention.

Tunnel boring starting from Kelenföld reached Móricz Zsigmond Square by Spring, 2008 and ended two years later at Keleti Railway Station. As parallel surface and station construction were also finished testing started in November, 2012 between Móricz Zsigmond Square and Kelenföldi Station. Train sets were manufactured by the French Alstom. Wide inter-carriage access enhances movement within the trains and trains were fully automated in 2015.

Besides the stations the attractions are also well-worth the short walk.

Route plan

This route will follow underground line 4 from Fővám Square to Kelenföld Railway Station. Normally, it takes around 8 minutes, however, this time you will need a little more time to check every station above and below surface.

The construction of the international award-winning Fővám Square Station resulted in a general improvement of the square as existing circumstances also changed favorably. Direct access from tram 2 and a more spacious passage for pedestrians above surface made it more appropriate to receive a vast number of tourists heading towards Grand Market Hall from Váci Street.

Fővám Square The graceful glass entry hall of the Fővám Square Station does not suggest the monumentality of the multi-awarded station below. No wonder it is often compared to a gothic cathedral.

Coming above ground the world literally opens up as there is a scenic view over a selection of attractions, such as the Danube with the Liberty Bridge, the (Gellért-hegy, Budapest) just opposite, or the impressive main building of Budapest Corvinus University.

Corvinus Univ. Main Building (formerly Main Customs Office) The rapid development of Pest in the second half of 19th century called for a proper building for customs service. The building of the former Customs Office designed by Miklós Ybl was a most modern and up-to-date facility and today is home to Budapest Corvinus University.

main entrance of Corvinus University of Budapest

Coming to the surface on the Buda side is similarly pleasurable, especially from 32 meters deep. St Gellért Square station was awarded The Building of the Year title by international architecture portal ArchDaily in the category of community buildings, however, surface attractions also match in beauty and quality.

St Gellért Square Station The water-themed design is followed by the underground station as well. The multi-awarded station was covered with 2.8 million glass mosaics that make it feel like large waves.

The square is dominated by the elegant Danubius Hotel Gellért Budapest and Spabut the CH building of Budapest University of Technology and Economics on the riverside also greatly contributes to its beauty.

CH building of Technical University The Neo-Renaissance building, aka CH Building, in St Gellért Square has been home to the Faculty of Chemical Engineering since 1904. The date on the facade indicates the year of founding Technical University.

The next station is among the most important intersections of the district. The station in Móricz Zsigmond Square was designed accordingly to smoothly handle a large number of commuters from and to various directions.

Móricz Zsigmond Square Station The station is characterized by long escalators and colorful walls. Wind generated by trains is diverted by vertical airshafts.

Standing in the middle of the square one can spot several interesting and impressive buildings, including the Mushroom in the middle, or the large single block of Gregersen row house, which, in fact, is a row of separate buildings.

Gregersen row Hugó Gregersen designed several tenancy buildings including the block in Móricz Zsigmond Square as the best-known. The facade of row house constructed in the 1930s hides separate buildings.

Újbuda Center Station is also based on an important intersection as the Market Hall of Fehérvári Street and Allee Shopping Mall, as well as connecting public transport lines make it a frequented spot.

Újbuda Center Station Újbuda City Center Station has a key importance due to Allee and the Market Hall. The design concept is based on glass attractions, such as the glass walls with green backlight along the escalators.

Although the busy crossroads somewhat hide the Refromed Church and the two adjoining residential buildings designed by Medgyaszay István. They, however, bearing the signature style of the designer are well-worth the attention.

Kelenföld Reformed Church The Church of Hungarian Advent and two adjoining tenancy buildings designed by István Medgyaszay were constructed in 1929 for the reformed community of Kelenföld.

As you proceed underground you will reach the densely inhabited residential areas with Bikás Park Station. This green area is the most popular recreational spot in the neighborhood so wasting as little of it as possible was of highest priority. The glass globe building resembling the Whale (Bálna) on the riverside in Pest well matches the environment and adds a modern character to the park.

Bikás Park Station Open roof windows make Bikás Park Station look like a dragon with pikes on its back. The glass walls allow lighting to create a special atmosphere both inside in daylight and outside by night.

Walking around 300 meters towards downtown along Tétényi Street you can find St Imre Hospital that replaced Erzsébet Saline Bath offering curative bath and drinking therapies until the early 20th century.

St Imre Hospital (former Saline Bath) St Imre Hospital was built on the site of former Erzsébet Saline Bath. It was so popular that despite the scarce population tram service granted access from the city center. A multi-storey bath complex with a hotel and chapel was built by the design of Miklós Ybl.

Taking the other direction towards Kelenföld Railway Station you will soon reach Kelenföld Center in Etele Street. The emblematic building constructed in the 1960s used to be home to a community center, a cinema and a library.

Kelenföld Center Although remodeling has been planned for a while Kelenföld City Center next to Bikás Park Station still fails to fulfill its potential. It was home to various vendors and service providers, a library, a community center, a market and Olimpia Cinema to serve local needs.

The terminus of line 4 in Buda is Kelenföld Railway Station, however, extension of the line to Gazdagrét is planned.

Kelenföld Station Everything is primarily about transportation in Kelenföld Station: changing from trains, cars and buses to underground in the smoothest possible way. Therefore, design plays a secondary role compared to other stations.