The beginning of this project started when the company FEMSA invited us to carry out an existing space audit in their offices located at Monterrey city center, a very conflictive zone with diverse land uses.
One of the preliminary strategies that were elaborated was the acquisition of a nearby property on the west side of the complex with a large extension and an abandoned four-story building. At first, they managed to buy the building to relieve the lack of parking issues and so to increase the area of their facilities.
In this property, there was a building from the mid-twentieth, which had primarily exposed concrete as its interior finish with a quite dense column grid structure that complicated very much to make most of the existing space. On the outside, it had an iconic red-brick facade like most industrial buildings of the time.
The construction site is on the south side of the lot, almost 5 meters away from the railroad, so this contextual characteristic represented one of the top issues to solve: to soundproof the building and avoid train-derived noises and vibrations to reach the interior.
A final solution was designed, using a glass skin suspended 80 cm from the original facade and double windows with mineral wool in the frames to regulate acoustics as much as it could be done.
It was proposed to start a renovation from the inside to the outside, improving the appearance of the buildings, of the spaces between them, of the image that the employees had of the complex, of the image projected outwards, improving the urban environment.
This project managed to make a joint solution on technical acoustics and thermal situations with the architecture design being able to reanimate the original building’s spirit and image.
The interior was renovated the same way the exterior was configured, preserving the plain and industrial image the structure conveyed. Therefore, there were proposed few parting elements covered in neutral color hardwood so it would not contrast with the exposed concrete original structure. The newly added program is an emergency staircase to the east and a service hall to the west with men and women restrooms, elevators, warehouses, machine room, and an emergency staircase.