The cities with the most buildings over 100 meters are CDMX with 130 and 17 under construction, Guadalajara with 31 and 4 under construction, Acapulco with 26 and two under construction, Monterrey with 22, and 14 under construction, followed by Puebla with 13 and 8 under construction.

In Mexico, the tallest building in the country is located in Monterrey and it is the Obispado I Tower, with 64 levels and 305.3 meters high, which was inaugurated in 2020. The second tallest building in Mexico is Torre KOI, in San Pedro Garza García, Nuevo León, with a height of 279.5 meters and 67 floors, which was the tallest in the Monterrey metropolitan area as of 2017.

From third to fifth place in the country are Torre Reforma (2016), Chapultepec Uno (2019), and Torre BBVA (2015), on Paseo de la Reforma Avenue, Mexico City. The three buildings adjacent to Chapultepec Park measure 246.6, 241.6, and 235 meters, respectively.

The skyscrapers of Puebla

Puebla has 13 buildings over 100 meters high in the municipalities of Puebla capital and San Andrés Cholula. The tallest of Puebla's skyscrapers is the 198-meter, 42-story Nvbola Tower. It is in the process of completing the finishing touches on what will be the tallest residential tower in the country, making it the eleventh tallest building in Mexico.

Also under construction is the 265-meter, 50-story Inxignia JV Angelópolis tower in San Andrés Cholula. OAK High Living Orso, in San Andres Cholula, with 232 meters and 58 floors, is expected to be completed in 2022.

In 2012, in Puebla, the Platea Tower stands out, with 155 meters distributed over 33 floors, and is in the process of delivering offices. With 136.9 meters and 38 floors, in 2018 the Artema tower was inaugurated in the city of Puebla.

Also in Puebla, the UMA tower, with 29 floors and 130 meters, was inaugurated in 2019, and in San Andrés Cholula, with 130 meters and 27 floors, is the Natyvo Tower, inaugurated in 2018. The oldest buildings over 100 meters are those of the San Andres Cholula Executive Tower, which consists of two 25-story buildings, inaugurated between 2003 and 2005.

In San Andres Cholula, the Antavia Luxury City 1 building is planned, which will measure 302 meters and have 61 floors, with the second tower of 208 meters and 41 floors, in addition to two twin towers of 195 meters and 38 floors.

What is happening in Mexico?

A skyscraper project is not commercially viable in Mexico. A developer who wants to build a skyscraper should not only invest in the architecture, but also in the land use permits and in improving the surrounding urban infrastructure to improve access to the complex. And this translates into costs that must be recovered with the rental of space, which the market is not willing to pay.

The problem arises because expensive urban infrastructure has to be built to run a building of this type. All the investment has to be recovered in rates of return and the investment is recovered with rents of spaces that the market is not yet willing to pay. It is not only the meters that have to be built but also the road infrastructure that represents a very high construction cost, together with the mechanics of the soil.

Building a skyscraper, for example, in Mexico City is also complicated by the type of soil, since to build it is necessary to dig in the subsoil, where there are large amounts of water, making the foundation expensive.

In addition to the fact that in Mexico City the land is very bad, it is a seismic zone and this combination makes it expensive and difficult to build. Japan, for example, is a seismic zone but does not have the same soil complications. In the case of big cities, big companies are willing to pay up to 50 dollars per square meter, which encourages the ecosystem to make multimillion-dollar investments in these projects.

The commercial dynamic lies in world-class tenants who are willing to pay rents in excess of 30 dollars per square meter in high-class buildings. This makes possible some ambitious projects with more than 40,000 square meters of offices, floors with more than 1,000 square meters of Gross Profitable Area (ABR).

The future of skyscrapers in the next 50 years is that they are greener and include environmentally friendly components in the main cities of the world where there is a potential market to pay the rents that make this investment profitable.

Sources: Universal Puebla