Construction of passenger centre in Keleti Railway Station has begun. The accessible passenger centre will be created below the platform level, through a complete reconstruction of the current domestic tickets desks and the area in front of them, on more than 1,542 square metres. The area will house nine ticket desks, and two personal customer service counters, one of which will be built to be accessible, MÁV has announced in a statement.

An important part of the passenger centre will be the glass roof, built incorporating existing columns, that will let in light from the passenger hall above. The walls on both sides of the entrance will be glass, and the service sales office will also be enclosed in glass.

Construction begins in "Keleti" (Photo: MÁV)

Domestic and international ticket sales will move into the hall, alongside a service sales counter, to handle the organisation of group travel. Waiting areas, a children's corner and a security desk will also be created in the hall.

The railway company's statement quotes Róbert Homolya, President and CEO of MÁV Zrt., who said that the first phase of the railway station's modernisation, which receives more than 30,000 passengers a day, began in 2019. As a part of the process, the passenger areas were re-paved, and a LED-based passenger information display wall created. The lighting of the station was modernized, the outdated cafés and pavilions demolished. The railway tracks were improved throughout the station. Róbert Homolyan added that in the current investment, thanks to government and EU funds, a modern and accessible passenger centre can finally be built in the station. In parallel, the roof structure of the Western Railway Station is being renovated, and the hall will reopen for the beginning of the next school year. In addition, further improvements to enhance passenger flow and accessibility will be carried out during the summer, the President and CEO added.

The glass ceiling will be a major element of the new centre (Source: MÁV)

The statement also noted that 25 ticket machines would be installed in the station to accelerate service. Some of these will be located in the centre, while others on the platform-level. Reducing the time it takes to buy tickets is a top priority, and a customer call system will guide passengers to available ticket desks. Modern passenger information displays will be installed throughout the station, and the public announcement system will also be modernised.

Two escalators and a duplex elevator will also be built (Photo: MÁV)

Escalators and lifts will ensure ease of access to the centre. Baggage storage will be located outside but near the passenger centre. Improvements are also being made in the back office spaces to facilitate efficient customer care.

It will be easier for passengers to access platforms and the underpass, render (Source: MÁV)

The nearly HUF 1.6 billion investment is being co-financed by the government and the European Union Cohesion Fund. HC Építő Kft. and Variabau Vegyesprofilú Építőipari és Kereskedelmi Kft have been contracted for the work.

The basement and the stairs leading from the metro underpass to the track hall have already been closed due to preparatory work at the railway station. The platform level can be reached through the main entrance from Baross Square and the entrances from Thököly Road and Kerepesi Road. Instead of the ticket machines previously at the main entrance, MÁV suggests passengers use the ticket machines in front of the Kormányablak and the Kerepesi Road passenger hall, the MÁV smartphone application or the new ELVIRA interface.

Those who wish to use a ticket desk can use the 4 counters next to platform 9, which are open from 6:30 to 19:15, and the international ticket office next to platform 6, open from 3:45 to 1:00, with 8 counters (domestic tickets also available). Luggage storage is closed temporarily, and the service is expected to be available soon in the corridor between the Lotz Hall and the international ticket office.

The basement and the stairs leading from the metro level to the track hall have already been closed during preparatory works (Photo: MÁV)

In parallel with the passenger centre's construction, the restrooms used by passengers will be completely renovated and expanded by 74 square metres on the underpass level of Keleti Railway Station. During the works, the interiors of the existing toilets will be completely dismantled.

Source: MÁV

The works are being carried out by MÁV's subsidiary, MÁV FKG Kft. – in accordance with historical monument protection laws and the basis of heritage protection permits. During the renovation, passengers will be able to use the toilets near the Lotz Hall, which open from the side corridor towards Thököly Road, as indicated on the information boards.

Cover photo: Construction of passenger centre in Keleti railway station begins (Source: MÁV)

Source: MÁV