The Municipality of Zalaegerszeg and the Government of Hungary concluded a cooperation agreement under the Modern Cities Programme to achieve several development goals, one of which was the development of the existing municipal swimming pool and its expansion with an indoor swimming facility with a 10-lane, 50 m pool and a learning pool within the swimming pool development concept.
When devising the project documentation, it had to be taken into consideration that currently there is one operational swimming pool in Zalaegerszeg, and a sufficient swimming facility necessary for the Zalaegerszegi Úszó Klub and Zalaegerszegi Triatlon Klub sports clubs, for talented students and for therapeutic swimming sessions had to be available in the construction phase as well. The construction can be scheduled in such a way that in the first phase the outdoor pool is built with its own swimming pool technology, along with a heatable cover and a changing room-wet room system for the transitional period. Once this is completed, the existing building can be pulled down and the new building with the 50 m pool and the learning pool can be built.
FORMING THE EXTERIOR
The new facility, an addition to the already existing buildings, brings new character with its sleek and simple design to the area of the open-air swimming pool in Zalaegerszeg. The way the building mass is formed and the facade is created is meant to be a transition between the multi-storey apartment blocks on the opposite side of Göcseji út, and the neighbouring suburban-style buildings.
The volume of the building mass is approximately equal to that of the existing building. However, its architectural and structural design is much more simple, in line with the design programme and current preferences, yet it is more elegant. Its architectural design has a dual quality: on the one hand, reflecting the sport and recreational functions, it is playful and it is reaching out, not turning inwards; on the other hand, the way the building mass is formed helps visitors find their way as easily as possible. The openness mentioned above is substantiated further by the contiguous glass surfaces, which give a pleasant character to the indoor functions through the intense visual connection to the outdoor pools.
When selecting the materials to be used for the facade, we followed the modest solutions that characterize the whole building, which also resulted in lower investment and maintenance costs. The playful and light character of the facade of the hall with the competition pool is counterpointed by the cubic, block-like annex that houses the service functions, which has light, plastered walls and appears to be weightier.
Adapting to the features of the site, the building we designed forms an L-shaped block along the planned outdoor pool. The building can have a mezzanine floor, because of the way the area of the swimming pool is filled up. As a result, there are three functional levels: the basement, which mostly houses the mechanical systems, the pool level with mixed functions and the grandstand for spectators.
The building opens up to swimmers from the corner of Mártírok útja and Göcseji út. On the northern front, on the corner of Mártírok útja and Botfy Lajos utca, there is the staff entrance, and the boiler house can be accessed from this front, too. The staff entrance opens to a spacious passage with direct connection to the staff changing rooms, storage areas and spaces for mechanical systems. Through the glass front of the main entrance, you enter the lobby that is directly connected to the ticket office and the cloakroom downstairs. From here you can access the grand and spacious lobby of the pool level through a vertical circulation core.
In the south pool area, there is a 50 m competition pool, and related service functions. There is a wellness area, supply rooms, and spaces for lifeguards, first aid and competition officials adjacent to the pool area. These are located in the west wing of the building, together with the 10×16 m learning pool. Changing rooms for visitors and adjacent wet rooms are also on this level.
A large gym and changing rooms for groups are located on the top floor. The grandstand with a capacity of 274 persons is also here.