Speaking after talks with Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony and Krisztina Baranyi, the district mayor, László Palkovics said the government was offering cooperation and full transparency to the local and the metropolitan councils on the project. He said the government interpreted the project, originally launched in 2017, as containing four elements, “university development, student housing development, student community spaces and research institutions”. “This is where we differ,” Palkovics said, adding that Karácsony insisted university construction had not been part of the agenda. “The presentation of the talks where the project was approved made it clear that a university quarter, rather than a student quarter would be built,” he said.
At the talks, the government pledged to build the university and the student quarter both, as well as “all facilities serving the students’ wellbeing,” Palkovics said. Preliminary estimates put the costs of the construction of the university alone at 440 billion forints (EUR 1.25bn), with an additional 100 billion for “generic facilities”, he added.