2014

MCHAP

CUBE Tower

Carme Pinós

Guadalajara, Mexico

March 2005

PRIMARY AUTHOR

Carme Pinós/Estudio Carme Pinós

CONTRIBUTING AUTHOR

Luis Bozzo /Luis Bozzo Estructuras y Proyectos (structural engineer)

AUTHOR

Grupo CUBE Internacional

PHOTOGRAPHER

Duccio Malagamba Carme Pinós

OBJECTIVE

We started the project with several goals: We wanted to create open office spaces, free of structural elements, which allow the users to adapt the space perfectly to their needs. Given the good climate of the city of Guadalajara, it was very important for us to offer well-ventilated offices without the need of air conditioning and spaces well illuminated with natural light. We wanted to design a singular building which could represent the client's expectations. The location of the building demanded a bigger building than those we normally find in densely-populated European cities, so we wanted to highlight its monumental character. The building opens up to the environment and the city, expanding towards the city and at the same time, offering itself to it. We opted for a high-rise building which was developed starting from three central concrete cores which contain all the facilities and vertical circulations. These cores work as pillars and are the only structural support for the building. Large cantilevered beams of various dimensions support post-stressed, column-free slabs. Thus both, the office modules and the parking area, are free from obstacles. The centre of the building –the area between the three cores– is an exterior space which is opened up sideways by huge voids: removing three floors of the office-modules on each side lights the central space and allows the cross-ventilation. The generated voids house covered terraces which the users can enjoy for outdoor activities. Externally, a skin of wood louvers mounted on sliding panels acts as sunblinds; vertical airflow is permitted while the heating-up of the glass is prevented.

CONTEXT

We were given a plot in the outskirts of Guadalajara which had to become a new business centre, but by the time we started the project the area was still an open space. The importance of the huge urban scale and the relation of the building with the city were always present during the design process. The client needed a corporate building to host their own offices as well as some other offices for sale or for rent. He specified that he wanted singularity as the area was meant to become a prime area with high-value office rentals. The brief defined just the number of square meters but it did not define the height and we had absolute freedom to deal with all the design aspects. We also wanted to take advantage of the good climate of the city of Guadalajara.

PERFORMANCE

The building has fulfilled all architectural and business expectations. The users enjoy the open well-ventilated offices with plenty of light without any structural elements which offer a lot of versatility. At the same time, every office is adapted to suit the needs of every user. The outdoor common spaces host regularly social and cultural events. The singularity and the quality of the building with a high artistic value have allowed the client to rent or sale the offices gaining higher profits than expected. The tower - named after the real estate developer's corporate name - has become a prestigious corporate building where many companies of Guadalajara have established their offices due to the comfortable, representative and powerful spaces. Cube Tower was a pioneer in high-rise architecture within this area in the outskirts of the city of Guadalajara. Nowadays this area has become a new center of office buildings where the Cube tower has now been surrounded and exceeded in height by other buildings. In fact, regulations changed just after we ended the project and the newer buildings were allowed to reach a much higher shape. The success of the project is undeniable: the same client has commissioned us the design and construction of another office building (Cube Tower 2) in a plot nearby.