A Terraced Tower Will Display Mexico City’s Best Design

A new home for Archivo, a Latin American design collection, will open up into the trees around it.

Like the branches of the trees around it, the floors of a new cultural space for Mexico City’s premier archive for contemporary design, Archivo Diseño y Arquitectura, will extend far beyond its central core.


The new space, scheduled to break ground later this year, will house more than 1300 industrial design objects in Archivo’s permanent collection, an array of what T magazine refers to as “humble masterpieces” that are international in scope but emphasize Mexican design like this mid-century chair. The new building, designed by Zeller & Moye architects in conjunction with FR-EE (whose director, Fernando Romero, is also a founder of Archivo), will also host temporary exhibitions and cultural events. With an auditorium, a library, a restaurant, a bar and more, the designers hope to create a social and cultural space with a dynamic atmosphere.

Located in a park in the middle of Mexico City, the building’s open terraces surrounded by greenery give it the atmosphere of a tree house. The twisted floor plates extending far overhead shade visitors from the sun and rain but allow them to enjoy the fresh air of the city’s moderate climate. “Contrary to a typical enclosed circulation, navigating the Archivo building will be a pleasant and exciting experience due to the immediate relationship with the surrounding green and the active life along its broad path that allows for public activities and meeting areas,” according to Ingrid Moye, one of the architects behind the design.

The goal was to ensure the six floors rose no higher than the surrounding trees, minimizing the impact of the new building on the park. The transparency of the building’s facade also allows pedestrians to see into the gallery as they pass by, or catch an eyeful of whatever social event may be happening on the terraces.

The result is an inventive structure that showcases the environment around the collection as well as the collection itself.


About the author

Shaunacy Ferro is a Brooklyn-based writer covering architecture, urban design and the sciences. She's on a lifelong quest for the perfect donut.