LOCATION Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico.
DESIGN & PROJECT ARCHITECT
Carlos Martinez / Maria Paula Gonzalez / Natalia Mora / Laura Garcia
The floods make part of the normal cycles of nature, and such the inevitable phenomena that man must adapt their spaces and lifestyle to it. This is how ARCA (ark in english) emerges as a meeting place for the community and man in their environment, to simultaneously protect, educate and enjoy the power of nature.
ARCA looks for one more element of the place, an object that as the stones of the River Usumacinta, the water and the time are responsible for carving, for giving it form and color. Even so, the building does not ignore its condition as an object in front of the water, so it let it pass, and take advantage of the raw material to create atmospheres in the interior spaces. It is the cycles of water that give character and identity to the building.
ARCA is a flexible space, a journey through spaces of different qualities, a sequence of wetlands and refuges that allows community uses to be as shared as isolated according to the need of the moment. To observe the floods, the ARCA prepares to guard, and then the main activity of the building happens in the higher levels while the lower ones protected observe the passage of water. In dry times the water continues to be present, channeled, feeding the building allowing a more flexible use, where cultural activities, community meetings, health services and education happens inside. Spaces of coexistence where the community finds its refuge. In addition, the passage of water leaves the soil fertile and the leafy vegetation grows rapidly, fed from the sediments and surrounding the building giving it a completely different character.