Smaltovňa Enamel Factory, Lučenec, SK

Function: Office
Country: Slovakia
Category: Recollective Architecture
Architects: Lukáš Kordík, Štefan Polakovič, Samuel Kadák, Barbara Rek, Ľuboš Dobóczi, Filip Hečko
Completion of design: 2018
Year completed: 2020
Nominated by: Andrea Bacová PhD
The enamel factory in Lučenec was founded at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries and produced enamel for the entire Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. In the 1960s, reinforced concrete warehouses were built between the original brick buildings, and a two-storey building was erected at the area’s entrance. Since the 1990s, the complex was left to deteriorate until 2018, when the GutGut studio began to work on its conversion and revitalization. The first brick building is home to the company’s premises and a restaurant. The reinforced concrete structure serves as a warehouse and the two-storey building has coworking and administrative offices for rent. The conversion project includes new urban functions too, such as the public square with a fountain, andesite paving and planting. The decision to situate the coworking areas on the ground floor has an advantage of being in contact with the square. With this conversion, the GutGut studio found inspiration in the material characteristics and structures of preserved architectural values in the two original brick buildings, which features were selected and applied in a balanced way.
Project Description

The Lučenec enamel factory stood dilapidated for many years with the building’s story long overlooked. The architecturally rich and historically significant building is relatively close to the city center, nevertheless,it was somewhat distant and forgotten. The new owner commissioned the architects to start the process of its restoration. An open-plan modern work environment was created which preserves the building’s essence with humility and respect for the original structure while inserting new elements that enhance its qualities and charm. The complex of the former enamel factory is opening up towards the city and its story continues to evolve.