Mexican firm Legorreta designed a pedestrian bridge between Tijuana and San Diego, transforming it in a more rewarding experience for those who cross the border.
The US – Mexico Border is the busiest in the world and one of the most fortified ones. The facility designed by Legorreta architects was built on a plot located in Otay, San Diego, to expedite the crosswalk at the US-Mexico border, connecting San Diego with the Tijuana International Airport.
The design concept of the 22,133 square meters is a building that houses all the necessary filters for the entrance and exit of border users, security and shopping areas connecting to the international bridge. A purple open central courtyard with an ash tree and a reflecting pool is the heart of the project as it acts as an articulator node dividing flows and functions. Passengers enter from the courtyard to an airy building with ticket counters and touch screens.
Taking advantage of the mild climate of the area, the architects chose vernacular materials such as stone exterior mixed with purple stucco and red limestone, whereas the stone gardens host agave and other desert plants. The horizontal cantilevers with simple geometries make the CBX facility a threshold that marks the crossing point between the two Californias that are linked by their history, biculturalism and geography.
Otay Cross Border Xpress, San Diego (USA) and Tijuana (Mexico)
Team: Ricardo Legorreta, Víctor Legorreta, Miguel Almaraz, Adriana Ciklik, Carlos Vargas, Miguel Alatriste, Emmanuel Pérez Eguiarte, Andrés Martínez-Lanz, Roberto López, Lourdes del Val, Lucía Cervantes, Arturo Violante.
Associate and executive architect: STANTEC Architecture, Arun Kaiwar, Christopher Wilson, Steve Cook, Dave Knoll, Michael Tatoyan, Mike Canevari
Landscape: Stantec Consulting, Inc.
Structural engineering: Hope Amundson Structural Engineers
MEP engineering: Stantec Consulting
Acoustics: Stantec Architecture
Lighting: Visual Concepts Inc
Security: U.S. Customs and Border Protection
Cost evaluation: Turner Construction Company
Building area: 22,133 sqm
Bridge area: 4,507 sqm