General view of the project within the site
The Access in each of the four walls are meticulously defined by its surrounding relations with the multi-family plot
The domestic structure respects all existing trees and selects one to be its core/access from south
A white canvas background enhance the first plane of trees during all day
An unexpected patio lies hidden behind the walls
Roof Plan and Elevations
Ground Plan and Sections
Main Strategy/Features
A “grandfather tree” as the home´s living heart
An independent corridor organizes a compartmented bathroom
The courtyard as an inner contemplative vitrine
An outer interactive shaded patio

Primary Authors

  • Román Jesús Cordero Tovar/PLUG architecture
  • Izbeth Katia Mendoza Fragoso/PLUG architecture

Contributing Authors

  • Izbeth Katia Mendoza Fragoso/PLUG architecture (Designer/Landscape Consultant)
  • Ing. Mauro Caamal Vargas (Structural consultant)


  • Izbeth Katia Mendoza Fragoso and Román Jesús Cordero Tovar


  • Román Jesús Cordero Tovar
  • Marcos David Matute González


The domestic requirements are organized in four wings setting a courtyard that protects a tree and treasures a garden as its core. Each wing is oriented and programmed with specific activities: access and study (south), store and shelter (west), sleep and serve (east), and cook and stay (north). Additionally, every side meticulously defines its connection to the outside through four equipped walls, with only one access each, in response to the climate (they act as trombe barrier), support to their inner activities and its outer relation of being placed on a multi-family plot.


The project is Located in Mérida, Yucatán, México, within a family plot that incorporates other houses and reunion support services, just after the city ring road, at north of the city. The fact of being a land with green and recreation areas causes to be repeatedly visit for events and ceremonies that are not always part of the family routine, and sometimes become intrusive and uncomfortable if one lives there and does not want to form part of it. Therefore, the required house unit should consider closing or opening to eventualities and have their own green space individually.


An existing "grandfather tree" (Cordia dodecandra or Ciricote) will consolidate a small sample of native vegetation that is growing in the inner courtyard of the house as its core. Thus, the concrete structure give tribute to the vegetal structure, framing its phenological transformations (sun, moon, rain, shade, etc.) with all that this entails (air purification, thermal comfort, reduction of stress and anxiety, among others). The perimetral four equipped walls, not only relates to immediate activities (storage, desks, closets, plateaus, etc.), but additionally stretch and exceed the roof level in order to become skylights and scape valves of heat. In this way, although the house is completely closed, it can breathe through its perimeter achieving a passive cooling system in the interior, very necessary in most of the year due temperature reach almost 50 degrees in the most heat season. All the involved material for the house is apparent and some elements with local and common plasters, valuing the natural aesthetics (texture, vain and grain) of the aggregates and spills based on concrete with native tree resins additives, offering an artisan perception that not only gives an added value to the atmosphere but also contribute to lower the inversion. The house concludes with a total constructed area of 130 m2 for a family of four members with a total cost of $ 50,000.00 usd.

General view of the project within the site