EDUCATIONAL

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FGP Atelier's Oversize Skylight for a Mexico University Library Sparks Wonder

At Mexico’s Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey, Francisco Gonzalez-Pulido's alma mater, the FGP Atelier founder designed a 7,000­ square­ foot skylight for the main library. Over 17 months of planning and five months of construction, 21 architects, engineers, and builders led by Francisco Gonzalez-Pulido executed the design, which looks like fallen leaves on the oversize skylight.

Take a look at the process below:

Made with Revit, Lumion, and Photoshop, an early top­down rendering examines the truss­ supported ETFE covering, its triangular sections conceived to com­plement the existing building’s staircases and bridges. Rendering courtesy of FGP Atelier.
Grasshopper combined with Kangaroo, a physics engine, determined the abstract leaf pattern screen­printed in white plastic onto the clear panels. Rendering courtesy of FGP Atelier.
This rendering predicts the shadows cast onto interior surfaces during the day. Rendering courtesy of FGP Atelier.
Another rendering interprets the skylight at night. Rendering courtesy of FGP Atelier.
The six­ story library was designed in 2017 by Sasaki Associates with an open ­air central atrium; for the new skylight, rather than use glass, FGP Atelier chose a single ­layer membrane of ETFE, the first known use of the lightweight yet durable material in Mexico. Rendering courtesy of FGP Atelier.
Inspired by the Tecnológico de Monterrey’s tree­-dotted campus, the fallen ­leaf installation, called La Hoja, is autumnal­ themed, intended to evoke the excitement of a new school year. Photography courtesy of FGP Atelier.

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