Seismic proofed with triangles & curves

A triangular concrete apartment block with rounded corners to stand up to earthquakes has been completed.

The building in Mexico City replaced a building on the same site that was structurally compromised during the September 2017 earthquake and had to be demolished.

Known as MO288, the new building includes 15 apartments and two commercial spaces across six storeys.

Before building commenced, a soil mechanics study found firm soil 30 metres below the ground level, so the team drove 32-metre reinforced concrete piles under the building.

As it was a wedge-shaped lot, the project team turned the project inward towards a large courtyard with a green wall that features a rounded edge, mirroring the rounded corner on the exterior.

In its design, load-bearing walls eliminated the need for columns and allowed rectangular rooms to fit into the triangular plan. The building has board-formed concrete walls punctuated with black box balconies

“In addition to being a challenge in terms of architectural design, the structural design of the projected building was a major challenge for structural calculation and seismic design,” the team told Dezeen.

“Together with the foundation slab and the concrete load-bearing walls reinforced on the ground floor, they work synchronously with the brick and concrete load-bearing walls on the upper levels.”

HGR Arquitectos finished the 1398 square metre project for developer Ciudad Vertical.

About the author

Desi Corbett

Desi is our weekly news journalist and the editor of Concrete in Australia magazine for 10 years. She has been heavily involved in all forms of engineering since 2013; part of a 30-year writing career across a range of subjects and media.