The emphatic geometric shapes of the church of El Señor de la Misericordia, in the centre of the Pueblo Serena urban development in Monterrey, recall the early American missions made from adobe and wood.
The imposing white structure opens on to a great plaza via its multiple transparent swing doors of the wide 11-metre entrance, allowing a full visual connection of the building’s interior with the exterior space. Another of the challenges was to resolve the access from the church’s basement floor to the neighbouring retail gallery. To generate a transition space between them, an adaptation vestibule was designed, with a great prismatic roof light that establishes a dialogue with and is reflected in a sheet of water.
Natural light constitutes the basis for this project: above the altar is a prominent skylight, with the light sketching a Latin cross in the void that presides over the entire space. The chapels enjoy natural light from the roof lights in the vertical shaft crowned by a rhomboid in the roof; each rhombus has a specific orientation, and so the colour of the light in these chapels illuminating the central nave changes throughout the day. The baptistery, which opens on to a long horizontal window protected by an awning that blurs the light, offers the view of a great sheet of water overflowing as a cascade into an inner courtyard.
It was essential to apply sustainable methods: the ventilation system allows natural air to flow through entrance and exit openings in strategic points. In addition to using a variety of materials for the correct insulation of the interior, the great space formed between the false ceiling of the nave and the roof forging operates as an air chamber and plenum to maintain proper ventilation and temperature.
The interior design proposal is integrated into the architecture: all the furniture as well as artistic pieces, such as the stained glass of the great rose window, that of the ossuaries and the gilt tabernacle with its triangular geometric shapes, were designed by Moneo Brock.
Although the construction is markedly modern in character, the ground-floor organisation of the church and its architectural elements—such as the bell tower, the stained glass windows, the front altar, the baptistery, the choir, the three chapels and the inner courtyard—are derived from traditional Christian churches.
The great bell tower, 43 metres in height, allows the church to be seen from a far distance and serves as a reference for the drivers on the National Road where it is located.
IGLESIA EL SEÑOR DE LA MISERICORDIA
Carretera Federal 500