Kelenföldi Erőmű


Because of the electrification program of the city of Budapest, the production of electricity started here at Kelenföldi Erőmű in June 1914. The buildings I visited were designed and built by Kálmán Reichl and Virgil Borbíró between 1927 and 1929.

budapest power plant

During the first years, steam was generated in coal-fired low pressure boilers, and electricity was produced in two turbogenerator units. From 1922 until 1943, new steam boilers and turbines were installed in two extension phases.

Just before the Second World War, 19 boilers and 8 turbines operated at 38 bar steam pressure. Most of the then, state-of-the-art equipment were made by Hungarian manufacturers.

Between 1962 and 1972, the power plant completely changed in accordance with the heat supply demands. The former condensing technology was replaced by back pressure and heating turbines. Also, the reliability of district heating was improved by hot water boilers. Coal and heavy oil firing was gradually replaced by natural gas firing.

Today they are protected by law, which means they’ll never be demolished, but left to slowly decay. This part of the Kelenföldi Erőmű, which was officially shut down in 2005, isn’t technically abandoned, several apocalyptic movie scenes and music videos have been filmed at Kelenföld. The art deco control room and the old transformer houses are, however, strictly closed to the public. I visited the site in 2015. Also check my report of this other Budapest power plant.

Built 1914
Abandoned 2005
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