Mexico City: Redefining its Waterscape


  • Loreta Castro
  • Reguera Mancera
  • Yvonne Labiaga
  • Peschard March


The ancient Tenochtitlan, born as a water sensitive city, understood how to blend with its natural context, retrieving its defining characteristics from it. The city of canals and chinampas was conquered by Spain in 1525. Together with the political and social transformation, it also went through an urban reorganization. The Spanish city was built out of stone and earth, gaining land by desiccating the lakes that conformed its waterscape. The modern Mexico City still rests upon what was once a lake system, a clayish ground that is continuously deformed by the weight and action of a 22 million-inhabitant megalopolis. The city deals with recurring flash floods and the insufficient supply of drinking water through a complex and expensive system of tubes and tunnels that solve the larger risk of a mega flood but are not enough to manage smaller events. Several solutions regarding a more sustainable management of the city’s hydraulic system and water ecosystem have been presented coming from a large number of specialists. At the Taller Hidrico Urbano of the School of Architecture of UNAM we design to achieve sustainable water management in Mexico City, developing acupuncture solutions that understand a complex social, political, economical, urban, and natural context and proposing projects that will have a domino effect. Such is the case of Tlaltenco Water Connective Tissue and Hydropark Quebradora.




How to Cite

Castro, L., Mancera, R., Labiaga, Y., & March, P. (2016). Mexico City: Redefining its Waterscape. L’architettura Delle città  - The Journal of the Scientific Society Ludovico Quaroni. Retrieved from



UNESCO-Chair "Sustainable Urban Quality" Series