Puerto Vallarta Project in Mexico approaching its completion
A joint venture of West 8, Trama Arquitectos and Estudio 3.14 design an urban renewal project for Vallarta’s iconic waterfront, locally known as the Malecón. This project has been carried out through the summer of 2011. By Thanksgiving of 2011, the work will reach its completion. This will mark a Renaissance for Vallarta’s historic district in a matter of just 5 months.
The initiator of this waterfront project is the mayor Salvador Gonzatez Reséndiz. He committed to an urban transformation with a rather inventive approach. The Town of Vallarta now holds an progressive and large-scale visionary strategic plan for the next twenty years, with a series of tourist destinations including the Malecón as the soul of the Historic District.
The West 8 design aims to project the Puerto Vallarta atmosphere, Mexico’s only beach destination set in a traditional village, into a new paradigm without losing its identity. It is conceived for the locals and tourists to mingle harmoniously with the romantic sunsets over the Pacific Ocean.
The public space scheme of the Malecon, uses a series of strategies to reintroduce the public realm to a human scale. The design provides comfortable shade in pedestrian areas accommodating inspiring view-lines to the ocean for visitors and residents. Innovative lighting has also been introduced to enhance the romantic moonlit effect.
The main feature of this unique place is the Mosaic paving, using the traditional local pebble-stone pavement technique. A native myth of creation, as narrated through drawings by the Jalisco born artist Fidencio Benitez, gave birth to the composition of the new mosaics pattern. The scale and challenge of the mosaics paving enhances the identity of local ethnicity and handcraftsmanship, two of the major attractions of Mexico, positioning Puerto Vallarta for a new era. These custom designs transform Malecón into a contemporary, vibrant and pedestrian-friendly public space.
Notes for editors:
Puerto Vallarta: it was the backdrop of a great twentieth-century romance between Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.
Malecón This picturesque old town in the spot where the Sierra Madre lavishly covered with lush vegetation meets the Pacific Ocean inside a bay has gone through an urban renewal program for the last six years. The pinnacle of the town’s renewal is a total regenerated coastal line that combines functions of authentic local spirit for living, retail, leisure, and tourism.
The featured Mosaic paving: the Jalisco born artist Fidencio Benitez’s drawings. Fidencio Benitez is a native-Mexican belonging to the Huichol group who has for decades master the art of the silhouette. The original art-work will be exhibited in the City’s Museum when opened. A story-line where the Oceans meet the precious mountain (Sierra Madre) perceived under the influence and interpretations of their sacred cactus called peyote and other native rituals stands at the base of this demiurgic master piece. The pattern is crafted under supervision of a professional prominent craftsman Amador Gomez Piña.
Bougainville Festival: Botanic Garden of Vallarta donated this year thousands of Bougainville plants to be used on the plant-poles for Bougainville Festival.
- Site area: 19,000 m2 / 1km
- Client: Municipality of Puerto Vallarta
- Design period: July 2011 – August 2011
- Realization: July 2011 – November 2011
- Partner: Trama Arquitecto (project architect), Estudio 3.14 (public realm and landscape architecture)
- Team: Adriaan Geuze, Daniel Vasini, Enrique Ibáñez González, Fernando Diez, Freek Boerwinkel, Joost Koningen, Juan Figueroa Calero, Maria Castrillo, Perry Maas, Tanyi Huang, Xiaoxuan Lu.
West 8 is an award-winning international office for urban design and landscape architecture founded in 1987. Over the last 20 years West 8 has established itself as a leading practice with an international team of 70 architects, urban designers, landscape architects and industrial engineers. West 8 developed projects all over the world in places such as Copenhagen, London, Moscow, New York, Madrid, Toronto and Amsterdam. The office gained international recognition with projects such as Schouwburgplein in Rotterdam (NL), Borneo-Sporenburg in Amsterdam (NL), Chiswick Park in London (UK) and Expo ’02 in Yverdon-les-Bains (CH). Many of the projects are the result of groundbreaking entries in important international competitions. Recently won competitions include Toronto Waterfront in Toronto (CA), Governors Island in New York (USA) and Playa de Palma in Mallorca (ES).
Amongst the numerous awards received by West 8 are the Honor Award of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), the International Urban Landscape Gold Award (IULA), the Prix de Rome, the Dutch Maaskant Award, the Bijhouwer Award, the Rosa Barba First European Landscape Prize, the Green Pin and the Veronica Rudge Green Prize for Urban Design.