Zaha Hadid Architects have unveiled a honeycomb-like design for a residential development in Monterrey, Mexico - their first project in this Central American country. The project, entitled "Esfera City Center," references traditional Mexican architecture and forms a complex - the configuration of which aims to reduce solar gain and capture prevailing winds.
The complex, located to the southwest of Monterrey in the Huajuco Canyon, comprises 981 residential units ranging from single-person lofts to four-bedroom apartments. Instead of designing 12 residential towers envisioned in the original brief, the architects opted for an interlocking series of low-rise volumes that envelop a public park. The facades were designed as a matrix of balconies that aim to provide optimal performance in terms of energy-efficiency and passive cooling.
In order to create a sense of community and neighborhood, the architects introduced transitions from solid to porous volumes and included a series of interconnected internal and external courtyards, gardens and public spaces. The presence of these areas are in line with the principles of CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design). The development with be constructed in three phases, the first of which will focus on 353 units and is scheduled for completion in 2018.