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Commendation

Mexicali Mist Space

Part 1 Project 2002
Nozomi Takeuchi
Robert Wheaton
University of East London London UK
The site of my project is located between the factories of Maquiladora industry and the colony for the workers in Mexicali on the border of U.S and Mexico. The everyday life of the local workers is a repeat of work and home. Within the highly contrasted situation, my building is creating the series of spaces that the workers can spend the time between work and home.

The quality of the space is developed from looking at a fissure; space between frame and cushion of my sofa. Between soft surface and hard surface, the squeezed fissure forms its movement. Intermittent space is translated as connected pockets with lightness of the materiality.

The space of the building is enveloped with the layered light skin of plaster and fabric on stiff ground. On the edge of the skin, there is a mist membrane opens to the ground. The plaster skin provides a shadow, the fabric works for air ventilation and mist cuts the cool and clean space from the dusty and hot climate site situation. The skin is supported by structure of the water pipes, which deliver the water for the mist space. In terms of importance of economical issue, there is a circulation of the water through the spaces. The spurted mist is collected and reused. The meaning of low-tech construction is considered for the local lifestyle with the possibility of that the building is built by local people.

Nozomi Takeuchi
Robert Wheaton


This student's project for her Degree was exceptional. The unit she was part of spent the year working on the edge of the dry and dusty border city of Mexicali in the northwest part of Mexico. Nozomi's project squeezed space for the community out of the ubiquitous urban grid, space that allowed for optimism in a city notorious for its exploitation of people and landscape. The project was seen as remarkable in its lightness of touch, logic of construction and economy of means. Her buildings, a series of delightful and generous public spaces, reveal a great sensibility towards the local culture and suggest a more sustainable future for this city.

2002
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