Infonavit Vivienda Unifamiliar Regional, Puebla

In 2014, we were invited by Infonavit to participate in the “Regional Single Family Housing” program. Thirty-two architecture firms participated in this program: each one was given the brief to develop a social housing strategy congruent with the local characteristics of each state, and each studio was assigned a particular city. For the city of Puebla, an interdisciplinary urban study defined an appropriate housing model.

The core strategy was to increase the density of social housing within a given urban radius. We found a variety of sites that were potential candidates for housing construction; however, the irregularity and narrowness of many of them made them unsuitable for traditional social housing projects.

We therefore proposed a high-density program of single-family dwellings, using very small floor areas and resolving the program over three or four levels with a family of modular prototypes that could occupy these spaces in a density of up to 100 units per hectare.

For the design of the five prototypes, we began with an initial module with a 4.5 x 3 meter floor area. In this module 4.5 m2 are allocated for a core of services and 9 m2 for the “served” area. This is the minimum module that defines prototypes A and A’. Adding a further half-module creates the prototype B typology, and joining two modules forms the prototypes C and C’. This strategy produced a set of three vertical typologies with three variations.


Puebla, Puebla, 2014

10,000 sqm

Infonavit Mejorando La Unidad, Tlalpan

This project was part of a program of improvements to housing complexes built in the 1970s in Mexico City. The collective nature of this intervention required the participation of the residents of a housing complex in the Tlalpan area. During this study it was decided, together with the inhabitants, to use all of the budget assigned to the project for the improvement of the public spaces shared by several apartment blocks.

For the project’s implementation, the public recreational, sports and social space was restored; a corridor now functions as a catalyst for various activities and a multipurpose roofed space was built to house a sports pitch. Playgrounds for children and young people were added to the project, as well as a landscape intervention.


Tlalpan, Mexico City, 2014

8,000 sqm

Rancho MNG

This project stands out against the horizon as a subtle landmark—a delicate intervention that generates enough of a rupture to show human intervention without impinging on the surroundings or the views of the natural landscape.

Responding to the region’s vernacular architecture, the construction evolves the zone’s pitched-roof typology by the use of contemporary materials such as concrete, steel, and hot-dip galvanized materials. The roof is probably the most striking formal gesture of this building, which takes the form of a rectangular volume measuring 45 meters on its longest side. At the same time, it is also responsible for the sustainable credentials of the construction, which harvests the rainwater it collects for secondary uses.

The design’s uniqueness lies in its simplicity and the use of geometry as a structural tool for the composition. In this way, the program is distributed symmetrically with the bedrooms and bathrooms located at opposite ends. Between them, in the center, is the main living area over which a gallery runs in the manner of a Le Corbusier-style “architectural promenade.” This walkway establishes a kind of comparison between the bird’s-eye view of what takes place inside and the external corridors from which to contemplate the landscape.


Gulf of Mexico, 2014

970 sqm

Photographs: Ignacio Urquiza