Torre Bicentenario . Mexico

source: OMA . luxigon

Compared with the world's other economically ascendant regions such as Asia and the Middle East, Latin America has a skyscraper deficit. Poised to harness the economic and symbolic potential of the Bicentennial, Mexico City will celebrate a historic moment with the emergence of a new skyscraper, the Torre Bicentenario. In an architectural age defined by the pursuit of expression at all costs, the Torre Bicentenario is building whose unique form is responsive rather than frivolous; a building whose form facilitates rather than complicates its use: the stacking of two pyramidal forms produces a building simultaneously familiar and unexpected, historic yet visionary.

Skyscrapers tend to internalize their features. Atriums typically create dramatic spaces within, hidden from the city around them. Here, a void cuts through the building's widest point, providing access to light and natural ventilation and creating a relationship between the floors within. Public programs are located at the junction of the two pyramids, at 100m, the datum of the buildings that surround it. A pattern of reflective glass panels covering 50 percent of the interior surface maximizes light penetration. The void twists at its midpoint, opening at the bottom toward the park and at the top toward the city. Rather than exacerbating the skyscraper's isolation, it connects the building to its surroundings. The building bulges toward Chapultepec park and the historic city centre along the axis of the Reforma.

The site of the Torre Bicentenario lies at the northeast corner of Chapultepec Park, adjacent to the interchange of two major highways. Located at the edge the park, major infrastructure and the city, the project has the potential to benefit all three. A chain of high-rises runs along the Reforma and continues around the park. The Torre Bicentenario will extend this line of buildings around the park.

The two districts adjacent to the Torre Bicentenario, Las Lomas and Polanco, are separated by two major highways and their interchange. To provide a link between them, a new pedestrian bridge extends from the Torre Bicentenario to the east, crossing over the Periferico highway, establishing a shortcut that reconnects formerly disengaged sections of the park and the city.

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