Mexico is leading the charge on a variety of eco-friendly initiatives,including cleaner energy and eco-tourism. In addition,a number of new building and real estate projects in Mexico are taking sustainability to the next level and challenging the limits of what is possible for today,tomorrow and beyond.
2013 has been a remarkable year so far for green building projects in Mexico real estate,starting with a new hospital in Mexico City that actually “eats” smog and pollution. Fox News first reported on the extraordinary structure earlier this year,describing its appearance as “a giant piece of honeycomb.”
“The structure is part of a three-year,$20 billion investment into health infrastructure in Mexico,” writes Fox News.
Designed by Berlin-based firm Elegant Establishments,the hospital towers over a busy thoroughfare in one of Mexico City’s southern neighborhoods and features a 100-meter long curved screen with a coating that can neutralize the chemicals that create smog,literally “eating” away at pollution in the city. How? In short,the screen is painted with titanium dioxide,which reacts with chemicals in the smog,breaking them down into smaller amounts of less harmful chemicals. In addition,the honeycomb shape helps to reduce wind speeds and creates turbulence in order to better distribute pollutants over the screen’s active surfaces.
“The designers say their building can neutralize the impact of the roughly 1,000 vehicles that pass by it daily,” writes Discovery.com. “It also helps with climate control and light filtration,keeping the hospital’s expenses down.”
Also in Mexico City,planners are busy turning vacant space under freeways into chic modern areas where residents can work,dine and play. Here,the Under Bridges,or “Bajo Puentes” project is converting vacant,debris-cluttered lots under overpasses and freeways throughout the city into vibrant shopping plazas and playgrounds that are complete with bustling outdoor cafes.
“Urban planners here,in one of the world’s most populous and crowded cities,have found a way to add thousands of square feet of new commercial and recreational space,” writes the Washington Post. “And it isn’t costing local government a cent.”
Officials in Mexico City say they have already developed four Under Bridges zones and have plans in place for at least 20 more in the coming months. The program demands that 50 percent of all available land be left for public use,such as playgrounds,exercise areas,picnic tables and more. Of the rest,30 percent is designated for commercial real estate,while the remainder is reserved for parking.
Finally,Cancun real estate may soon be home to an amazing new self-sufficient eco resort,dubbed the Grand Cancun Eco Island,which has been planned with the help of renowned architect Richard Moreta Castillo to help celebrate the city’s 50th birthday. Considering there were only a few residents living in Cancun in the early 1970’s,the city’s dramatic rise to become one of the world’s most popular vacation destinations is truly deserving of a project of this magnitude,which includes the construction of a manmade island that generates renewable energy while simultaneously cleaning up the ocean.
Although the exact dates for breaking ground on the Grand Cancun have not yet been released,the project will reportedly have everything savvy travelers have come to expect from the world’s top vacation destinations,but will also help to actively improve the environment by filtering out hydrocarbons and pollutants in the water and reducing the entire population’s fuel fossil consumption.