Architects: 4A Arquitectos
Location: Mérida, Yucatán, Mexico
Design Team: Ricardo Combaluzier, Enrique Duarte, William Ramírez, Josefina Rivas
Collaborators: Luis De La Rosa, Alma Villicaña, Carlos Guardián, Mariana Farfán, Julio Rosas, Aída Ordóñez, Fabián Rosas, Ricardo Combaluzier
Area: 22,600 sqm
Photographs: David Cervera, Alessandra Ortíz, Rocío Rojo
The Gran Museo del Mundo Maya is a building with a contemporary expression about what the Mayans worshiped rather than the Mayans built, in this search we found a recurrent symbol, a key element in the cosmic vision of Mayan Culture: Ceiba, the sacred tree, whose roots penetrates and conforms the underworld, the trunk’s level lays down where life and daily activities take place underneath the shade of its frond which spreads its branches up to the sky and human transcendence.
With this concept of the world’s creation up from three stones and the Ceiba tree, we present the architectural design integrating the program needs and required spaces for the different functional activities, the structural design concept that gives physical bearing to the building and to the other infraestructure engineerings shared out for nurturing and supporting all the museum’s areas. Museum collections, transit cellars, research and study áreas of the great archaeological acquisition and a 260 parking spaces area is located at the “Ceiba’s roots” level.
At the “Ceiba’s trunk” level, up the perron, the main lobby, ticket offices, personal belongins kept area, 2,000 m2 of permanent exhibition rooms and 600 m2 for travelling exhibitions, public relations office, childcare center, restaurant with terrace , souvenir shop and a terrace bar. Executive and administrative offices are located inside the “Ceiba’s frond”, so are the high-definition large format cinema which includes performing arts facilites for various artistic and cultural activities as well as the multi-purpose hall. We understand sustainability as an integral part of any project and in this meaning the aspects considered are:
Located at the heart of an important urban subcenter at north of Merida, the design raises seeking for natural air and light using passive systems to achieve energy benefits and environmental comfort. The main lobby covered and shaded by “La Ceiba” which holds a hollow core, joints the different floors of the building.
We designed a comprehensive museum, pretending to make suitable every space to every user: a twined ramp at the perron, a sidewalk-level elevator and another one in the parking lot, to yield universal access with equal dignity, Braille signaling, all facilities in corridors and restrooms for the elderly or handicapped people, rest areas while taking the tour, spaces for workers to improve their life quality, machinery and equipment rooms designed for both, machines and people who operate them, bestowing to workers the same importance as visitors.
Significant economic rationality guidelines were followed, displayed in the design of functional spaces with direct use of passive systems and the selection of materials and building systems that privileged participation of local and regional companies and their employees; and the optimization in infraestructure engineerings projects to achieve the best use of resources for the operation and maintenance.