Architecture and transformation in Mexico City’s UNAM University Campus

Alejandro Leal, Bruno Cruz, Alejandro Pérez-Duarte

Abstract

Architecture in permanent transformation is the starting point of this article, focused on the interaction between material and social aspects of a case study on modern Mexican housing, observing the building’s life in relation to its inhabitants. The Multifamily Apartment Building for Teachers (Multifamiliar para maestros), a faculty housing building at the UNAM campus, is a mid-twentieth-century experimental housing project, developed at the beginning of Mexico City´s densification. Today it is registered in UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. The case study sheds some important insights into the transformations of a spatial modern utopia facing inhabitants' needs. Numerous differences were detected between the original idea behind the building’s architecture and the reality of its users today, revealing not only the ambiguous nature of the building but also problems derived from the country’s accelerated modernization. The results show contrasting approaches of the intermediate space between the building’s conception, and the constant process of becoming a home, where the scope of its habitability is negotiated. 


Keywords

Mexican architecture; modern housing; Mexico City; processual nature of architecture; habitability

Full Text:

PDF

References

Anda, Enrique de. Vivienda colectiva de la modernidad en México, los multifamiliares durante el periodo presidencial de Miguel Alemán, 1946-1952. México: UNAM, 2008.

Bille, Mikkel, and Tim Sorensen. Elements of Architecture. London: Routledge, 2016. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315641171

Carranza, Luis, and Fernando Lara. Modern Architecture in Latin America: Art, Technology and Utopia. Austin: University of Texas, 2014.

Diario Oficial de la Federación, August 11, 1982, 36.

Esquivel Hernández, M. T. "El uso cotidiano de los espacios habitacionales: de la vecindad a la vivienda de interés social en la Ciudad de México." Scripta Nova 7, no. 146 (2003).

Fallan, Kjetil. "Architecture in action: Traveling with actor-network theory in the land of architectural research." Architectural Theory Review 13, no. 2 (April 2008). https://doi.org/10.1080/13264820801918306

Forty, Adrian. "The modern hospital in England and France: The social and medical uses of architecture." In Buildings and society: Essays on the social development of the built environment, edited by Anthony D. King, 61. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1984.

Giedion, Siegfried. Mechanization takes command. A contribution to anonymous history. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2013. First published 1948.

González de León, Teodoro. "La ciudad universitaria." In La UNAM en la historia de México, edited by Fernando Pérez Correa. México: UNAM, 2011.

"Habitaciones para empleados." Expedientes 1833 y 1836, caja 324. Fondo Universidad, Secretaria General, Archivo Histórico de la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (AHUNAM).

Heikinheimo, Marianna. "Paimio Sanatorium under Construction." The Artist and Journal of Home Culture, no. 7 (2018). https://doi.org/10.3390/arts7040078

Latour, Bruno, and Albena Yaneva. "Donnez-moi un fusil et je ferai bouger tous les batiments: le point de vue d'une fourmi sur l'architecture." In Explorations in Architecture: Teaching, Design, Research, edited by Reto Geiser. Basel, Switzerland: Birkhäuser, 2008.

Leal, Alejandro, Alejandro Pérez, and Bruno Cruz. "Modern apartment culture: multifamily housing at CU-UNAM." Contexto, no. 17 (2018).

"Multifamiliar para Maestros." Cajonera 3. Fondo Mario Pani, C.U. Dirección de Pensiones Civiles, Archivo de Arquitectos Mexicanos de la Facultad de Arquitectura (AAM). AAM, Fondo Mario Pani, C.U. Dirección de Pensiones Civiles, Multifamiliar para Maestros, Cajonera 3.

"Multifamiliar Universitario." Gaceta de la Universidad, November 8, 1954.

Pani, Mario. Los multifamiliares de pensiones. México: Editorial Arquitectura, 1952.

Picon, Antoine, and Alessandra Ponte. Architecture and the Sciences: Exchanging Metaphors. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2003.

Ryan, Zoë, ed. In a cloud, in a wall, in a chair: six modernists in Mexico at midcentury. Chicago: Art Institute of Chicago, 2019.

Yorke, Francis R. S., and Frederick Gibberd. The modern flat. London: Architectural Press, 1950.

Abstract Views

1134
Metrics Loading ...

Metrics powered by PLOS ALM




This journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Universitat Politècnica de València

e-ISSN: 2341-2747    ISSN: 2341-3050   https://doi.org/10.4995/vlc