High tables and stools at Milan 44
(Image credit: TBC)

Abandoned for seven years, a four-storey warehouse and auto parts store in Mexico City’s Colonia Juarez has been revived as an urban market and mixed-use development, a potent salvo in the regeneration of a quarter that had, by all accounts, been in decline since an earthquake in the mid-1980s.

Architects Francisco Pardo Arquitecto and Julio Amezcua have tread lightly, framing the building’s tenants against a backdrop of the original raw, exposed concrete ceilings, beams, and columns. Levity is introduced by way of a green staircase and light streaming in through floor-to-ceiling windows – Pardo likening the effect to a vortex that folds the street-scape up through the building to the rooftop, which houses a Mexican beer bar.

In addition to a barber, beauty salon, pilates and yoga studios, and office, Milán 44 – the complex is named after its street address – is drawing in the neighbourhood with a sweep of stalls including Holly Waffles, a creation by Belgian street artist Bué the Warrior, sushi bar, a southeastern Mexican stall, and an organic food market.

For the developers, Milán 44 is both an experiment in the repurposing of extant, abandoned architecture, and a crucial component of what they view as the ‘genetic code for the city’s future development’. Either way, it’s a tasty treat.

Table and chairs with empty bottles hanging from above

(Image credit: TBC)

Modern furniture at restaurant in Milan

(Image credit: TBC)

Wooden seating area

(Image credit: TBC)

Blanco Yoga corner shop

(Image credit: TBC)


Colonia Juarez
Delegación Cuauhtémoc


Daven Wu is the Singapore Editor at Wallpaper*. A former corporate lawyer, he has been covering Singapore and the neighbouring South-East Asian region since 1999, writing extensively about architecture, design, and travel for both the magazine and website. He is also the City Editor for the Phaidon Wallpaper* City Guide to Singapore.