The Latin American headquarters of the bank, BBVA Bancomer, and the tallest completed building in Mexico. The architecture clearly expresses the engineering of the structure.
Engineers designed for Mexico City’s low frequency earthquakes by placing the structural frame on the exterior of the envelope. This Eccentrically Braced Megaframe acts as an external protective skeleton, carrying all the building’s lateral wind and seismic loads, and is designed to avoid excessive earthquake damage through ductile connections.
This structural design is exceptional on several levels. The external mega-frame not only resists lateral loading, particularly seismic, in a highly efficient manner, but also uses sequential analysis of earthquake magnitudes to optimize structural weight, and therefore cost. The result of this approach is incorporation of a yielding zone within the frame which is activated only under maximum seismic activity. The building also exemplifies the result of close collaboration between architect and engineer from the outset of design, with structural criteria clearly influencing architectural concept.