Archetonic - AMIRÁ, cooperating with the city and its natural surroundings
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AMIRÁ, cooperating with the city and its natural surroundings


Housing  /  Completed

We faced two main ideas, one related to the site and the other related to our position as an architectural firm in Mexico.

Regarding the site, it was clear from the first visit that the views towards the city were the basis of the project. The local conditions allowed us to define hierarchies in the decision-making process, resulting in the shape of an elongated volume parallel to the contours, configuring a front open to the landscape and a back for circulation and services.

Concerning our position, we asked ourselves: How not to make typical generic housing? In the wide spectrum of housing, from the room to the common areas, there is a lack of spatial quality. For this reason, we decided that the project should show the available programs and uses in its exterior design.

We consider the building as a means of cooperation between itself, the city and its natural surroundings. From the point of view of the outsider, the building reads the natural conditions and tries to enhance them through its orientation, parallel to the outline of the terrain and the use of concrete that absorbs the hues of the setting sun and the local arid vegetation. Seen through the eyes of its inhabitants, the building is a vantage point in the local landscape that extends beyond the city itself, allowing for constant visual contact with the surroundings.

AMIRÁ overlooks the city of Querétaro, with a privileged view of its surroundings. This visual relationship was fundamental in our design process to achieve reciprocity between the architecture and the city. The project comprises 126 residential units, organized in superimposed and offset blocks of regular geometry, with each unit receiving natural light and ventilation. Each unit and most of the facilities have views of the city due to the project's location and volume solution, as well as an intense relationship with the outside through terraces and large windows. The regular blocks are pierced by bodies with angular, porous and permeable geometry that contain the common areas, indicating the program's different uses and dynamics. These common areas are extended into the void, cantilevered, half open, seeking to offer users quality spaces. Our architecture protests and reflects on how housing projects resolve the typologies of coexistence in our country. The rear façade is composed of vertical and horizontal circulations and faces the entrance square, while the main façade has a transparency that faces the city to contemplate its fortunate views, with extended terraces that create shadows and mitigate the temperature rise inside. Two different shades of apparent concrete give materiality to the façade, which at sunset takes on the ochre and earthy tones of the scrub and arid surroundings of the building.

AMIRÁ is a project that focuses on creating quality spaces for housing without necessarily sacrificing economic profitability. Sometimes, it is assumed that one must choose between profitability and spatial quality. However, this project contributes to the discussion with alternatives to overcome this false dilemma, from more efficient construction to the use of materials that reduce maintenance costs in the long term.


 31800 mq
 Archetonic + GSEBI
 Rafael Gamo


Archetonic is a Mexico City based firm with over 30 years of experience in architecture. Our practice is the lens through which we view the world and relate with society.

Exploring multiple levels of design, we apply a systemic methodology to create self-sustaining, context-sensitive spaces that embody spatial quality and economic responsibility.

We constantly strive to go beyond the conventional. Our design process reflects on how spaces are built and inhabited in our country.

Experimenting with the limits of design has led us to unique possibilities in space. All our projects have a fundamental commitment to improve the environment. We pay attention to design methodology, materials and local processes.

Today, our greatest challenge is to strengthen the relationship with the people actively and passively involved in our projects. In doing so, we'll be able to offer more meaningful design solutions for our cities and communities.

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