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Inmaculada Concepción, El Prado, Iztapalapa

Immaculate Conception, Prado Churubusco
Photo: Catedrales e Iglesias/Cathedrals and Churches, Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

The Immaculate Conception Church in El Prado is often admired as a fine example of 20th-century religious architecture in Mexico City. 10 years prior, architect José Creixell had completed a barely-visible chapel behind the Sacred Family Church in Roma. It’s a remarkably rotund half-barrel that’s beloved by parishioners there.

  • José Creixell de Moral (1908-2003) is probably best-remembered for the Edificio Esmerelda (1953). It’s towered over the corner of Iztaccihuatl and Insurgentes Sur (at Iztaccihuatl 6, in Hipodromo Condesa) for 70 years. The building was thoroughly rehabbed and reinforced in 2017.

In the El Prado neighborhood, Creixell took on a much more prominent project. Between 1952 and 1956, he put up a series of triangles to support a concrete roof. The eaves come right down to the exterior wall. Somehow, he fit a second nave along the western wall.

There’s a small atrium that leads to the north-facing entrance. And three great triangular windows illuminate the entire interior. The entranceway awning is not original to the design, but seems to serve its purpose.

El Prado is a small neighborhood. It’s culturally closer to Coyoacán, just across the Río Churubusco. Both sides of the old river were “meadows” associated with the farmlands of the Churubusco monastery. Today, they’re an interesting corner just north of the Canal Nacional area. It’s also just a few minutes walk to the CENARTS National Center for the Arts.

Sources cited:
Ivan San Martín Córdova, (2016) Estructura, abstracción y sacralidad,
Universidad Nacional, Autónoma de México, Facultad de Arquitectura

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