LegoRogers launch new BBVA Bancomer headquarters

10 February 2016

The President of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto, will officially open a new urban landmark on the skyline of Mexico City - BBVA Bancomer’s new headquarters today.

The 50-storey office tower is the first completed building by LegoRogers, a collaboration between international architectural practice Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners and Mexican firm Legorreta + Legorreta. The architecture brings together both practice’s different architectural languages yet common values to create a building that is both contextual and distinctive.

Located on the Paseo de la Reforma, the tower marks a gateway to Chapultepec Park with sky gardens overlooking the city and the park. The architecture aims to promote a sense of community and interaction between staff. On the ground floor, the triple-height lobby sits on the corner of Paseo de la Reforma, which links the daily operations of the bank branch with executive-level commercial businesses at higher levels. In the lobby, glass elevators face the park and will transport visitors arriving by foot, as well as the employees up to the sky lobby at level 12. The sky lobby is a window to the city and the park. This area will be used for exhibitions and public events and connects the hall and dining room with terraces overlooking Chapultepec Park. At this level security manages visitor access to the building.

The VIPs and executives access the building through a separate lobby on the ground floor, with a dedicated access area for vehicles to guarantee a high level of security and privacy. The executive elevator offers direct access to the top executive floors and discreet access to public floors of the building, including the heliport.

The building’s main structure is externally expressed to provide flexibility in planning internal office spaces. The external braced frame provides the seismic structural system to the building allowing the core to be arranged diagonally organising office space on two sides. The result moves away from the traditional centre core, four sided floor layout and responds to the spectacular views towards the city and Chapultepec Park.

Sky gardens every nine floors create outdoor space within the tower and provide meeting and break-out areas where people can enjoy spectacular views of the city.

The façade design is inspired by the Mexican traditions and architectural heritage. The geometry of the diagonal structure is used to create a lattice frame to protect the façade from direct light and heat from the sun. As a result, the building has been awarded a Gold LEED energy standard.

The tower provides 78,800m² of prime office space for BBVA Bancomer and can accommodate 4,500 members of staff.

The qualities of the building are:

  • - The building responds to its immediate context and the city;
  • - Sky gardens provide a focal point for grouping working communities within the BBVA Bancomer culture;
  • - An architectural legibility of building elements gives the tower a human scale;
  • - It provides flexibility in re-planning the building for future change.
  • - It responds both socially and environmentally by minimizing resource consumption, waste and greenhouse gas emissions, while the use of passive solar protection systems are maximized to reduce energy consumption.

The BBVA Bancomer Tower is a distinctive landmark on Mexico City’s developing skyline.

Ivan Harbour, Partner, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, said “Mexico City’s new headquarters for BBVA Bancomer is a celebration of the 21st Century workplace as a multi-layered, collaborative community. The building’s distinctive sky gardens, the heart of its community, speak to the city around it and far beyond. The building expresses its functions to the outside world; its fluid and flexible interior space, its external core, its structure and its environmental controls together form a legible, holistic, architecture that is globally distinctive and a unique response to its place.”

Richard Rogers, Partner, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners said “We were thrilled by the opportunity to work for BBVA Bancomer on such a unique project for Mexico City and to collaborate with Legorreta + Legorreta, one of the world’s leading architectural practices. 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. 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.”

Victor Legorreta, Director, Legorreta + Legorreta said “The collaboration started as a friendship between Richard and my father (Ricardo Legorreta), and later I have also become a close friend of Richard. Both RSHP and Legorreta + Legorreta were invited by BBVA Bancomer to enter a competition to design a new headquarter building for them in Mexico City. As Richard had been visiting Mexico for over 20 years, we had always talked about the possibility of both practices working together, so this was the perfect opportunity to form a team and participate in the competition. We are very excited to see the sketches for the building transform to a completed building. It was a great opportunity to work collaboratively with RSHP and BBVA Bancomer on this special building in the city.”

Nick Billotti, Chairman of Turner Construction Company, Marhnos Construcciones said “The building is the most sophisticated, highest quality building in Mexico. It’s a signature building for the bank, for the expansion of their business in North American markets.”