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The Magdolna project is the first truly integrated socially sensitive regeneration project in Hungary. Taking place in one of the most deprived areas in Budapest, it aimed not only to improve housing and living conditions but to strengthen local residents’ feeling of community. The improvement of the physical quality of housing therefore went hand in hand with support for the active involvement of residents and was supported by several soft projects.

Executive summary

The Magdolna project is Hungary’s first truly integrated socially sensitive regeneration project. Taking place in one of the most deprived areas in Budapest, it aimed to strengthen local society as well as improving housing and living conditions. Two phases have been implemented so far. The first was carried out in 2005-2008 funded by the district and city councils, while the second in 2008-2011 was supported by the ERDF. However these two phases are only the start of a longer development strategy for the neighbourhood, which is likely to take 15 years.

The second phase of the project cost €7.3 million and brought about substantial improvements to housing as well as the local environment. The hard infrastructure investments were complemented by many soft projects which aimed to tackle the severe social problems of the marginalised groups in the neighbourhood.
Some important conclusions may be drawn. Housing improvement in deprived neighbourhoods can lead to many unexpected conflicts arising from the poor housing conditions and the harsh social situation of the inhabitants, so it often provokes antisocial behaviour. To handle such conflicts, the management organisation needs to develop its communication and conflict resolution skills. The community also needs to be helped to build up community organisations to stimulate positive contributions from residents and achieve better and lasting results for the renovation itself.

The project also highlights the need for more flexible procedures and a longer financing period for European funds used in neighbourhood renewal, because of the special characteristics of the complex and integrated measures that socially sensitive rehabilitation programmes comprise. The current Hungarian approach of two- or three-year projects is too short and even the full seven years of an operational programme is not long enough. It is also apparent that such projects can be sustainable only with the strong participation of a wide range of stakeholders: institutions, NGOs and residential initiatives.

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Technical information


Neighbourhood renovation boosts community spirit in Magdolna

Member State and Region

Hungary - Central Hungarian Region - Budapest, 8th District

Duration of project

33 months (08.2008 – 05.2011)


Total budget: 2 000 000 000 HUF (7 300 000 €) - ERDF contribution: 1 600 000 000 HUF (5 800 000 €) - ESF funding: 176 000 000 HUF (640 000 €)

Cohesion Policy Objective

(ii) Competitiveness and Employment (phasing in)

Managing Authority

Directorate General Managing Authority for the Public Administration Reform Programme of the National Development Agency

CCI nr of OP

2007HU162PO001 Operational Programme 'Central Hungary'


György Alföldi DLA, (Project manager)

Municipality of 8th District of Budapest, Hungary.

Tel: 36-1-459-2100

Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


http://www.rev8.hu/eng.php (EN)


Urban renewal, disadvantaged neighbourhoods, housing