BBVA Tower

by | 19. Apr 2018

Commercial | Project | Skyscrapers
BBVA Tower. Image © Roland Halbe

BBVA Tower. Image © Roland Halbe

In Mexico, the home country of Luis Barragan and Frida Kahlo, colour reigns supreme. From the rainbow painted city of Mazatlan to Mexico City’s candy colored neighborhoods, the country is awash in whimsical hues and their divine meaning. As colorful architecture of decades past gives way to contemporary monochromatic International Style buildings, one new tower at the center of Mexico City’s central business district stands out. Located where Paseo de la Reforma meets Chapultepec Park, the city’s answer to Manhattan’s Central Park, a colorful new tower, sheathed in a diagonal grid of deep purple and black with bold neon orange and fuchsia spiral staircases, houses the new Mexico City headquarters of BBVA Bancomer.

BBVA Tower as seen from Chapultepec Park. Image © Roland Halbe

BBVA Tower as seen from Chapultepec Park. Image © Roland Halbe

BBVA Tower as seen from Chapultepec Park. Image © Roland Halbe

BBVA Tower as seen from Chapultepec Park. Image © Roland Halbe

Soaring 50 stories above the city, BBVA Tower accommodates more than 4,500 bank staff, centralizing its operations. Produced through an alliance known as LegoRogers, a collaboration between Mexican firm Legorreta et Legorreta, led by architect Victor Legorreta, and London-based Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, led by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Richard Rogers, the tower incorporates the design hallmarks of its two parent firms. With a mutual appreciation for linearity, color, and form, the firms came together to realize a tower emblematic of their two design aesthetics and expansive, renowned portfolios, resulting in a building unlike any other.

Colourful features adorn the building’s sky gardens. Image © Roland Halbe

Colorful features adorn the building’s sky gardens. Image © Roland Halbe

“The form of this building is based on a rethinking of conventional approaches to office space. The design creates a new hierarchy of vertical communities or ‘villages’ with open areas where staff and visitors can meet and enjoy spectacular views across the city,” said Richard Rogers, Founder and Partner at Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners. “It serves as a landmark building that provides a clear link between Chapultepec Park and the Paseo de la Reforma. The highly sustainable design incorporates a façade which draws on the heritage of Mexican architecture; the result is a reinterpretation of the distinctive texture of traditional ‘celosia’ screens. This building successfully reflects the beauty of LegoRogers’ talents.”

An elevation and plan shows the building’s unique composition. Image © Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

An elevation and plan shows the building’s unique composition. Image © Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

A typical floor plan shows the building’s open concept floor plates. Image © Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

A typical floor plan shows the building’s open concept floor plates. Image © Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

In true Rogers form, the building expresses its personality through material, form, and a touch of quirk. Recalling the firm’s pioneering work on the Lloyd’s of London headquarters, BBVA Tower’s form is driven by program, gathering disparate typologies using distinct shapes and material elements, to create an exuberant and coherent form. Inspired by Mexican vernacular architecture, the building’s color scheme reflects the design’s contextual approach, which incorporates Barragan’s signature fuchsia—a mainstay of Mexican color palettes—with contemporary takes on sunset orange, royal blue, and chartreuse.

A unique combination of material and colour is used on the tower’s exterior. Image © Roland Halbe

A unique combination of material and colour is used on the tower’s exterior. Image © Roland Halbe

The multi-story lobby is airy and daylit. Image © Roland Halbe

The multi-story lobby is airy and daylit. Image © Roland Halbe

Bright colours and unique materials define the building’s interiors. Image © Roland Halbe

Bright colours and unique materials define the building’s interiors. Image © Roland Halbe

The tower is urban whimsy at its best: soaring orange pillars meet inverse orange pyramids to enclose employee dining spaces. Fuchsia ceilings frame landscaped terraces hundreds of meters above street level. Large multi-story windows pop out from the facade, bathing the interiors with light while disrupting an otherwise steel-enclosed facade. Structural trusses seem to soar in every direction, encouraging the eye to explore a dozen different perspectives of the same facade in a single glance.

Employee dining spaces feature striking orange pillars and city views. Image © Roland Halbe

Employee dining spaces feature striking orange pillars and city views. Image © Roland Halbe

The employee dining hall. Image © Roland Halbe

The employee dining hall. Image © Roland Halbe

Far above the bustle of the street, sky gardens located every nine floors create direct access to the outdoors, some featuring three-story spiral staircases. Landscaped with local Mexican plants and trees, the terraces offer respite to employees with unparalleled views of the city. The interiors, designed by Lego Rogers and SOM, are bathed in natural light and infused with color in keeping with the building’s vibrant exterior.

One of the building’s sky gardens. Image © Roland Halbe

One of the building’s sky gardens. Image © Roland Halbe

A different colour staircase adorns each sky garden. Image © Roland Halbe

A different colour staircase adorns each sky garden. Image © Roland Halbe

An interior space. Image © Roland Halbe

An interior space. Image © Roland Halbe

Designed to minimize resource consumption, waste, and greenhouse gas emissions, the tower incorporates passive daylight shading through its latticed facade, which simultaneously provides seismic protection through a reinforced bracing system.

The facade, a diagrid of purple and black panels, provides shading and seismic protection for the building. Image © Roland Halbe

The facade, a diagrid of purple and black panels, provides shading and seismic protection for the building. Image © Roland Halbe

A unique multi-story auditorium building. Image © Roland Halbe

A unique multi-story auditorium building. Image © Roland Halbe

Mexico proves to be a perfect location for Rogers’ signature colorful style. Contextual yet contemporary, the tower represents an evolution of Mexican architecture, continuing traditions of sustainability, beauty, and quality of life while injecting new energy and technology into the built environment of one of the world’s most populous cities. Now one of the tallest buildings in Mexico City, BBVA Tower is an early arrival to a district soon to be deeply changed by the addition of numerous skyscrapers by the world’s leading architects—but it is certain to remain unique on the city’s skyline.

BBVA Tower at night. Image © Roland Halbe

BBVA Tower at night. Image © Roland Halbe

INFORMATION

CITYMexico City
COUNTRYMexico
SIZE188,777 sq.m
ARCHITECTRogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
Legorreta + Legorreta

CLIENT

CONTRACTOR