Lola Mora Cultural Center



CLIENT Local government of Jujuy / SIZE 5 ha, 37 acres / STATUS Under design, 2018 / DESIGN TEAM Balmori Associates / Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects / BuroHappold Engineering

Lola Mora (1866-1936) was the first Argentinian and South American sculptor. She is author of innumerable monuments across Argentina and the world. The Centro Lola Mora is composed of a museum dedicated to the work of the artist, a convention center and administrative offices. The 15 hectare landscaped site, which will include a sculpture park, and exterior amphitheater, parking and gardens sits on the bank of the Rio Grande and encompasses some of its riparian buffer.

The two biggest challenges of the projects are the site’s topography and climate. To mediate a 70m difference between the northern and southern edges of the property, Balmori Associates proposes implementing a cable railway and sideway elevator, canopy walks, and landscaped terraces. Some of the architectural programs will be tucked underneath existing landform; others will be covered with green roofs.  The intention is to minimize the impact on the site that offers an incredible variety of established plants from the time it was a botanical garden.

The landscape design will incorporate sustainable water management practices to deal with the drought period and torrential flash flood events. This includes the selection of native plants to the design of the embankment of the creek that traverses the site, or retention ponds. The idea is to celebrate water and its absence.