Casa Tierra, México D.F. Residence

Casa Tierra México, D.F., Mexican Building Design, Property in Mexico, Architect

Casa Tierra : México, D.F. Building

Mexican Residence – design by SerranoMonjaraz Arquitectos

13 Jan 2012

Casa Tierra

Location: México, D.F.

Design: SerranoMonjaraz Arquitectos

Project Description

Casa Tierra is the result of the perfect balance and combination of all the available materials and technologies to design a flexible and energy saving environment. Architectonic knowledge and aesthetical experience result in house that closes the circle. From the soil used as building material, to the natural light used to optimize the resources and décor, every detail was considered to create the whole.

Casa Tierra – before:
Casa Tierra Casa Tierra México Casa Tierra México D.F.

The construction system of Casa Tierra was done with Pressed Earth Blocks (PEB) made from soil of the same lot. This system was selected because it is aesthetic, as well as cost and energy efficient. It is also fire and pest resistant, virtually soundproof, durable and structurally sound. PEB provides complete architectural freedom and is made from non-toxic readily available natural raw material. Compared to other systems, it is more flexible and does not affect the width of the walls. The soil was pressed with 3% of concrete and 7% of lime, being 90% of the material needed for the construction obtained directly from the lot.

Casa Tierra – after:
Casa Tierra Casa Tierra México Casa Tierra México D.F.

Once the construction system was determined the calculation of the necessary soil was done. With the amount needed, and the volume that was left behind, a basement was incorporated into the design of the house in order to obtain the building material. PEB buildings are structurally sound and regularly exceed 700 PSI. The strength, durability and longevity stands in stark contrast to other building materials. A typical wood frame building has an average life span of 75 years while earthen structures will stand for centuries.

A team of specialized mechatronic engineers studied the temperature of the lot by drilling devices at different depths in order to determine the best constant temperature. The results showed that at a depth of 4 meters below the regular surface of the lot a constant temperature of 17° Celsius was found. At this level 200 linear meters of pipes were installed for a heat interchange system to maintain the temperature of the house with renewable energy efficiency.

Casa Tierra Casa Tierra México Casa Tierra México D.F.

The Pressed Earth Blocks are distributed in 3 different positions around the perimeter of the whole house generating box walls, both solid and hollow with a circle hole. The distribution was done in order to use the inside part of the blocks in different ways. Some of the hollow blocks will be used to contain in its interior the necessary installations for the house (hydraulic and energy) as well as to receive the concrete structure. Other hollow blocks will be use to generate a lattice that will give a magnificent light effect to the interior of the house during sunrise and sunset. The interior walls are single thick used for all the divisions and joints.

Taking advantage of the characteristically sunny weather of Mexico City, solar collectors will be installed to heat the 100% of the water necessary for the daily activities. Also photovoltaic panels will be used to reduce the energy consumption resulting in a 30% saving of the average rate of a house this size and it will produce up to the 100% of the energy for day to day use. The lighting design incorporates a central control system with low voltage lamps.

Isolated walls and ceilings will increase the maintenance of the indoors temperature of the house the whole year long. A green rooftop will also be incorporated to increase the isolation and provide fresh clean oxygen into the house. The rooftop is also part of the exterior design of the house and highlight of the outside concept.

A Pluvial collector system will be installed to make the most use of the rain water for the toilets and in combination with a treatment system the water collected will also be used to water the gardens and maintain the exterior areas. Water saving faucets, toilets and showers will complement the water saving program of the whole house.

Casa Tierra Casa Tierra México Casa Tierra México D.F.

Casa Tierra México – Building Information

Project: Casa Tierra
Location: México, D.F.
Year: 2010
Architectonic project: Serrano Monjaraz Arquitectos
Design Team: Arq. Juan Pablo Serrano O., Arq. Rafael Monjaraz F., Arq. Mayra Díaz Martínez
Area: 676.64 sqm
Construction: 900 sqm
Constructor: CONVEA
Lighting design: Brimare
Photographs: Pedro Hiriart
Materials: wood, metal, stone, glass, solar collectors, pressed earth blocks

Casa Tierra images / information from SerranoMonjaraz Arquitectos

Serrano Monjaraz Arquitectos


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Casa Tierra