Architectural pyramids celebrate humans and nature in Mexico

Architectural pyramids celebrate humans and nature in Mexico

An architectural pyramid complex in Mexico’s Guanajuato region by 3ME Arquitectura celebrates the relationship between humans and nature

Two large, terracotta-coloured architectural pyramids stand out among the green fields on the edge of the central Mexican city of Salvatierra. They belong to a complex called Módulo de Riego (Spanish for ‘irrigation module’), which forms the headquarters of the local Association of Agricultural Producers. Conceived as a cultural centre to celebrate balance and sustainability between humans and nature, while promoting the Guanajuato region’s economy, produce, and connection with the land, the dramatic architecture is the brainchild of emerging architecture studio 3ME Arquitectura.

‘The organisation seeks to provide certainty to crop production by generating jobs and agricultural products, strengthening an interest in the land, and reaffirming identity in a conscious attempt to curb migration,’ explain the architects, who looked at the region’s agricultural building typologies and traditional hacienda structures for inspiration.

Enter the two large pyramidal volumes that frame the entrance to the site. ‘They are reminiscent of old grain silos that are scattered throughout the surrounding countryside, and give the building a sense of agricultural scale and meaning,’ says the team. 

from the inside looking out towards the courtyard at the Agricultural Producers building of Salvatierra

Walking through the pyramids, visitors enter a large open courtyard, which is carefully paved and planted. A path leads into the various structures around it, containing space for offices, a training room, auditorium, reception area and product display, as well as ample on-site parking. Inside the pyramids, tall, white geometric halls provide flexible exhibition areas and multifunctional facilities for the community. 

Working with familiar shapes and typologies, and memory and experience of the link between humans and nature, the architects also infused their design with contemporary references. Its strong shapes recall the Jesuit chimneys of Mineral de Pozos, a small town in Guanajuato; the drawings of Sigurd Lewererentz for an unbuilt crematorium in Malmo, Sweden; and the pyramidal structures of the Museo Casa das Histórias de Souto de Moura in Portugal. 

The team hopes this centre will help revitalise the strong links this region has to agriculture. ‘It is only through the experience of the space that we rediscover the value of the utilitarian and vernacular buildings characteristic of this territory,’ say the architects. §

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