E. Jerem 1 / Z. Vasáros 2
(1 Archaeological Institute of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary / 2 Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Faculty of Architecture narmer architecture studio, Budapest, Hungary)

The city of Sopron, located in NW Hungary, has played a significant role in history on a number of occasions, due to its geographical endowments. We are well aware of the city’s historical connections of various historical periods thanks to archaeological excavations. Some of the much emphasised, long-term aims of the project are the scientific assessment of a complex which extends over three countries (Austria, Slovakia, Hungary), the exploration of the area’s touristic potential and – as a synthesis of the former – the conceptual definition of the presentational possibilities.
The goal is to formulate a mediating channel for the presentation of a Hungarian region extremely rich in archaeological-historical heritage. Regarding the means, traditional methods can be complemented by the most modern technology and virtual reality. The architectural and spatial definition of an appropriate display on an area that has excellent opportunities for tourism is essential for the functional operationability as well. A well designed and structured visitor centre presents, explains and points forward. The spatial and temporal linking of the historical and natural heritage with a touristic and educational aim is of extreme importance. Thanks to previous research, a database has been compiled on the region to be presented. This includes the historical, cultural and geographical “layers” which are present from prehistory to the Middle Ages in an exceptional continuity. Beside the archaeological and professional results, the area has touristic potentials which have been realised only partially. On the basis of planned and accomplished national and international examples, it is possible to define the methods, the architectural complex and the cultural-touristic programme. Apart from the theoretical results that have been applied at other places, it is the concrete location which defines the scientific material that can be presented.