Text description provided by the architects. The house was built in an area south of Mexico City in the old town of La Magdalena, adjacent to the river of the same name. The Magdalena River descends from the forest of Los Dinamos, and is the last living river in Mexico City.
This location and the proximity to the river give very specific characteristics to the land, despite the fact that it has been overtaken by the city, it still preserves an immediate country environment.
The natural topography of the land has a slope towards the river from 25% in the first 7 meters and then reaches an almost completely flat area, where the house is located. The trapezoidal polygon and a 2 meters restriction between buildings provoked a scheme that naturally followed the shape of the terrain.
The space was designed as the home of a young family of 5 members, an architect (dad), a doctor (mom), a boy (5) and two girls (8.1). The program should cover workspaces for each adult, specifically a workshop, a study area, a family room and a large entertaining area.
Access from the street is located in the upper level and done through a bridge that reaches an open vestibule from which you can go down to the courtyard where the access door to the house is, or continue to the terrace.
The upper floor is divided in two spaces, the upper level of the glass volume which houses the studio and a game salon and a great terrace with views over the river and forest. On the ground floor the private areas are developed, service, and family life. The latter are located in the crystal volume and the bedrooms are located to the south in the volume of concrete.
One of the premises to be established was that users could perceive the existence of the river from anywhere in the house. Visually it is achieved with a rooftop terrace of the private area, and audibly the sound of the river can be heard throughout the whole house.
The design identifies three predominant elements of the site. The river as a visual and auditory element, the high trees sketching shadows and setting a vertical rhythm and the hill that rises across the river.
The duality and contrast of the two main materials respond to a proposal to divide the specific activities that happen inside the house, grouping them in coexistence activities and individual activities.
The living area is kept in a single transparent atmosphere, and the volume of concrete containing the individual spaces. The use of light changes drastically from the private to the public, in the private the light is handled in a timely manner and in the public space it blends with the outside. The house haves a water recycling system that takes the water from the showers to be used at toilets and for cleaning, after a simple treatment for odor control.