Modern home in Mexican plateau revives ancient water harvest

by Thomas Grant
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In the slope of Tepozteco mountain, Meztitla (Náhuatl for “place near the moon”), Casa Meztitla is in a never-ending relationship with nature, harvesting/filtering water the way it was done in Pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. Surrounded by subtropical rainforest that remains untouched, its inhabitants believe that what the land gives should be returned to the property.

In an area with no public water supply and a rainy season that lasts only from July through September/October, the home uses only the water it can capture and reuse from the property. Water flows through an intricate system of filtration. Two main (or three including the pool) water reservoirs exist the potable water reservoir covered by the grass patio, and the open-air reservoir (using aquatic plants, fish and a pump) for irrigation which resembles “cenotes”, open-air water sources sacred to Mayans.

The water system relies on gravity and can store 30,000 liters; it provides enough water for the house all year round. Conceptually, this stormwater management captures every drop of rain that touches the property (3800 square meters), uses it in different ways, and does not let a dropout. The result is abundant water and land that is constantly irrigated in a region with seasonal droughts.


EDAA Architects- Luis Arturo García

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