+ Design statement from Sanzpont arquitectura
Santa Maria del Mar is one of the oldest virgin avocations. She isn’t related to any apparition; instead she relates with the need that marines and their families who stay on land feel for having the highest protection from heaven. Stella Maris, Star of the Sea is how they call her since ancient times.
Cancun is a city of sun, beach and tourism. The architectural project though of religious character must respond to these 3 key elements and their correspondent transcendence. The city owes its foundation to the Caribbean architecture, composed of open and green spaces, latticeworks, etc. which provides natural comfort to the user.
When designing a basilica one must offer an official religious public building for the liturgical celebration and the adoration of the lord, a sacred space that provides purity, protection and serenity which by tradition is achieved by a standard of identity, top esthetic beauty, symmetry and proportion.
Inspiration for the concept comes from the strength and softness of the Caribbean ocean waves and the white sand of its beach. The rhythm of the ocean and the sensation of peace and harmony serve as design principles to provide a unique identity with a strong relation to the region and the project site.
The project is composed of a big public-religious (Catholic) space that can receive hundreds of people for mass inside a space of purity that radiates protection, harmony, softness and peace, all this simulating the protecting mantle of Santa Maria del Mar as maternal inspiration.
The project is located in a new public sector of recreation in front of the Nichupte lagoon. The project must integrate, relate and complement the public space throughout a strong pedestrian connection with the new walkways, generating a plaza with green areas that invite the user to enter to the religious center.
Architectural Concept: for a functional, bioclimatic, emblematic and urban project.
The virgin’s mantle inspires the project’s form as a maternal protection symbol. The ocean waves underline the roof’s silhouette in search for rhythm, harmony and balance. The perfection and balance of marine life also serves as inspiration in the design line.
Bioclimatic Design: Minimizing Environmental Impact.
The project counts with bioclimatic strategies to achieve an adequate comfort using natural renewable energy; this includes natural cross ventilation, solar protection and thermal isolation. Because of its bioclimatic design oriented to energy savings it avoids the use of mechanical cooling equipment that would imply excessive consumption of energy without even taking into account if the basilica were at its maximum or minimum capacity; By these means the environmental impact and the carbon footprint are reduced. The design responds to a correct and constant flow of ventilation, favoring the pressure difference that generates wind movement throughout all the spaces.
+ Project facts
Design Team / Collaboration:
Arq. Victor Sanz Pont
Arq. Sergio Sanz Pont
Eder Jafet Hernández
Mónica Merlín Becerra
Zahzil Sophia Martínez Juárez
Elizabeth Valencia Domínguez
Mauricio Duhart Hernández
Eric Gallegos Merchand
Julio Polanco Reyes
José Miguel Cano
Oscar Sanz Pont
Aviña & Duarte Asociados