BAF Building – Atizapan de Zaragoza Building

BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza, Mexican Architecture, Industrial Complex México

BAF Building, México

Atizapan de Zaragoza Building – design by ARQme Arquitectos

2 Jul 2012

BAF Building Mexico

Design: ARQme, Lomas de Vista Hermosa, Mexico

Location: Atizapan de Zaragoza, Mexico

The Site

Located on the northern outskirts of Mexico City in a mountainous area in the municipality of Atizapan de Zaragoza. The property has six hectares adjoining the east to Federal highway Chamapa-Lecheria. The building is located 70 meters above the highway and serves as a retaining wall and a multi-use space.

BAF Building BAF Building Mexico Atizapan de Zaragoza Building BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza
photographs : Jacob Sadrak

The Commissioning

The development of the Master Plan to create an industrial complex of cutting edge technology oriented towards construction; it includes the production halls,workshops and general services, as well as the complex corporate building.

Resolving the difficulties that implies to do an industrial complex on ridges of considerable slopes taking maximum advantage of the topography, the operation of the production halls and the Corporate Mixed Use Building.

Structural and Spatial concept

The Structure and the building space are a metaphor and a reality of the ancient mexican Nahuatl chinampas-building technique. Emulating the use of endemic Ahuejote tree branches to concentrate portions of land on the banks of rivers and swamps in Xochimilco, a new technique was developed, using prefabricated concrete branches that are anchored to the ground and rise up to 20 m. high in order to fulfill the necessities of the productions halls. This metaphor merges the facade, thermal conditioning and structure in an elegant system of concrete lattices resulting in a chiaroscuro effect that emphasize the natural lighting levels within the space. Thus, giving rise to a spot emanating a placid and reflexive atmosphere, which is difficult to achieve in the noisy world we live in, and specially being so close to the production hall.

The building and its concrete branches system serve as retaining wall of the controlled areas that were made for the production platforms that ranges from elevation +0.00m to -10.00 m. as well as protecting shield, evoking the chinampas; they area useful safeguards of the aggressive and constant northern winds.

Function and Overlapping program

These Multi-Use spaces provide an additional 720m3 storage for natural aggregates in its 12 silos distributed in the first three interconnected stories to the automated concrete batch plant. On top the architecture studio becomes the center of the building, accompanied by the suspended mezzanine. Finally at the top are the headquarters command bridge.

Interior-Exterior and Continuos Flow Diagram

The space is discovered an understood in an instant, a communicative and continuos space bathed by natural light, the flow of words and sounds from the people inside flows like a whisper when we walk along the creek, but here it is transformed into natural human productivity. The degrees of intimacy are enough to develop a specific task, nevertheless always as an user “ I feel wrapped and surrounded, ready for working but at the same time my view can rest on the horizon when I look trough the branches of concrete”. The staircase is the main artery where contact between the different departments allowing direct dialogue essential for people to create a community that seeks a common goal. The perception freshness and warmth in the inside is produce by the direct dialog between the 9m. high Myrtle tree and the building logical orientation, allowing only north daylight into the space, shading the south windows and almost disappearing any penetration of the intense heat of the western facade. The Last level is emphasized by the juxtaposition of a rectangular prism that rest on the great mass of the body of the building in the transverse bold cantilevered arrangement as a bridge command of a ship. It is on this floor where the main reception, boardroom and president’s office are, allowing a considerable roofgarden outdoors landscape terrace, to be the fifth facade,equipped for meeting, leisure, presentations and exhibitions for employees, visitors and clients. Using a belt of exterior ramps system and a centralize staircase to have access to all floors of the building, generating cross programing interaction and a handicap accessibility.

BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza Mexico BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza Mexico BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza Mexico BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza Mexico
photographs : Jacob Sadrak


The build has been endowed with the cutting edge control systems for communication inside the building, as well as with the production areas outside. The architectural decisions and placement orientation, form and functionality permit the building to be highly efficient when it comes to ecology and sustainability. During daytime, you can ignore electric lighting and a high degree of comfort is achieved through the air injection system from the exterior to the myrtle tree.


The master plan of the industrial complex embraces in second phase the so called phase of Energy Balance. A sustainability goal of 95% by deploying solar energy installing hubs over the production halls aiming for zero consumption level, collecting rain water and residual form green treatment to alleviate the high consumption of drinking water used daily basis in the productive process. This effort produce a considerable reduction in the CO2 footprint and a friendly community relationship.

Innovative Applications in Concrete

The use of the CPC 30R B Portland Type White Cement with black and white aggregates for the S551 and S552 panels, as well as fluidizing additives, air excluders, and the addition fo the CRAP.30 that reduced in a 30% the use of drinking water for the elaboration of the S00 and S200 series prefab/panels of the building facade.

FAE system implementation in Concrete

Architectural and Structural Prefab disciplines merge in one system emulating organic branches that, aside from providing an appealing aesthetic appearance, serve as principal structural support elements. Discrete and sophisticated structural connection systems were used to resolve the total massing with a precision and tolerance of +-5mm. More than 200 panels S100 and S200 along with the nearly 80 branches S550.10 and S550.11 of which the stability of the building depends.


Use of the hanging prefabricated system made of white concrete stringers S550.3 and a tension black concrete S622.2 assembled with a passed stud. The treads are screwed laminated frit glass.

BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza Mexico BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza Mexico
photographs : Jacob Sadrak

BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza – Building Information

Architect: ARQme
Client / Developer: FAPRESA + ARQuitecturame
Environmental Engineer: Energetica
Structural Engineer: Predecon

BAF Building Atizapan de Zaragoza images / information from FD

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