Office skyscraper Torre 41 a blend of Nature and structure | The Plan
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Office skyscraper Torre 41 a blend of Nature and structure

Taller de Arquitectura X

Alberto Kalach’s architecture exists in an extraordinary world, a world at once mechanistic and primordial. This is a world fascinated by structure and the use of reason yet simultaneously open to nature and the vagaries of sensory pleasure. Indeed, it may be that Kalach’s architecture creates such a world, inventing architectural form that allows the sky and rain, earth minerals and chlorophyll to co-exist in light and in shade. Kalach’s most recent building, Torre 41, is a small commercial tower of independent character at 41 Constituyentes Avenue in Mexico City. This new tower is not about facadism or glitz or the homogenous ennui of international capital. Rather, it rethinks the essential components of a tower: vertical structure, horizontal structure, services, the building envelope, the building’s connection with the ground, and the building’s connection with the sky. It provokes many key architectural questions. Years ago, Aldo van Eyck proposed the cigarette machine test. Would the introduction of a vending apparatus destroy the integrity of a specific architectural space? Exploring the interiors of Torre 41, it is apparent that this daring structure is more than capable of accommodating the accumulation of artefacts. It is in fact both robust and beautiful. Kalach’s own studio, on the first of seven office floors, is already packed with desks and bookshelves and architectural models. These spaces can fill up without losing direct visual contact with the outside world through floor-to-ceiling membranes of glass. Is there a big idea? The main design move at Torre 41 is to sling taut slabs between non-identical party walls, structural blades to the east and the west. The result is work areas free of columns and with exposed ceilings. Office suites as decks or bridges in the sky. This, and the liberation of almost the entire ground area for communal use, may recall Foster’s strategy for the far larger Hong Kong...

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#Tomas Casademunt  #Yoshihiro Koitani  #Mexico City  #Mexico  #Offices  #North America  #2016  #Taller de Arquitectura X  #Letter from America  #The Plan 093 

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