A ‘living façade’ made of aluminium panels

The National Biodiversity Pavilion in Mexico City, designed by architect Fernanda Ahumada and Studio FR-EE, features a façade of moving aluminium panels that respond to light and wind.

The building, located at the National Autonomous University, will house archives and mammal, reptile and fish collections of the Institute of Biology. The circular building covers more than 11.000 sqm, divided over 3 storeys.

The lower level integrates views of the surrounding natural environments. The base of the building is constructed using Cantera, a volcanic stone. The upper levels feature double facades made with glass and multi-perforated aluminium, which offer controlled views while responding to interior lighting and ventilation needs. The dynamic facade is composed of thousands of movable 30×20 cm aluminum modules that sway with the wind. The volcanic stone represents the local biodiversity, while the aluminium facade symbolises the role of climatic conditions in biodiversity’s evolution and endurance.

Photos: Mariola Soberon / César Belio