ClientJacobo Micha
DesignerJacobo Micha Mizrahi
Prize3rd Place in Architecture Categories / New Residential Building
Entry Description

The housing project is located in the surroundings of Mexico City and comes as a recover of residential activity in a zone that was invaded by industry. With units from 90 to 148 m2, NATURA has a total of 344 units in a 20,700 m2 land. The project is shaped by 6 blocks with 6 levels each and one 15 level building that contains housing and the amenities on its lower section. With this solution we managed to leave the central space as the heart of the complex filled with green and nature. NATURA is an exploration between natural and artificial. The concept for this project was to explore the beautiful fragmentation and detachment that leaves suffer in the weathering process and found a way to translate this phenomenon to concrete, imitating and applying this effect to the buildings. In the design process, we questioned the way we design housing and all kind of spaces nowadays and felt the need to recover this natural transformation of elements that gave shelter to humanity since its primitive times. We shaped “Living boxes” with solid and acoustic concrete that guard glazed elements and at the same time in a very subtle way this fragmentation and detachment of the concrete makes allusion to nature. Although the main material applied to the complex is concrete, we applied color to the inside and common areas of the project. We broke the cold and basic sense of the concrete with color details. Color in NATURA gives in a first impression a warm sensation to its users and secondly the sense of orientation and uniqueness of each housing building. In a very essential way this housing units result harmonic, natural, and aesthetic, capable to mimic with the context and ground they are planted on.

About Designer

JACOBO MICHA MIZRAHI (Mexico City, 1964) Graduate from Anáhuac University’s School of Architecture (Mexico City, 1996). Jacobo Micha founded the ARCHETONIC practice in 1991, building on his business vision developed while working for family businesses—a formative experience that taught him how to succeed with an independent firm. The practice started out as a small office of just four people. Thanks to the interior design quality of their offices—combined with good business connections from his previous work—Micha began to design, develop and build interior design projects on commission and by recommendation. Over time the work evolved from interior design commissions to architectural projects for housing and office spaces. In 1999, Micha began to see how clients’ decisions, rather than those pertaining to the original architectural concept, were affecting the final aesthetic quality of his projects. Therefore he decided to assemble a new team with a different profile, calling on investors to develop projects so that he could demonstrate his own approach and convictions about architecture. In this way, the firm has so far designed, developed and built over 120 residential projects, business premises, as well as tourist and office premises. ARCHETONIC now employs over thirty professionals with extensive experience in designing master plans, real-estate developments, architectural projects, interiors and constructions. The firm has received numerous national and international prizes such as the Cemex Building Award (Mexico), the World Architectural Festival WAF (England), Architizer (US), and the Marble Architectural Award (Italy). “Archetonic / Jacobo Micha Mizrahi”—a book edited, published and distributed by Arquine—provides many details about Micha’s impressive professional career and shows twelve of his projects built between 2003 and 2009. Micha’s work has also been published in various specialist national and international media outlets, and he has frequently been invited as a speaker at several Mexican universities.