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La Loma Larga: Rethinking an inner-city edge in Monterrey, Mexico

October 19, 2021
Mexican cities present today a very high level of socio-economic inequality, translated in an acute phenomenon of spatial segregation. The most apparent symbol of the ever-increasing gap of wealth, power and status is the eruption of gated communities in all cities, that often come as a reaction to the feeling of threat and vulnerability emanating from violence, and usually associated to informal settlements.
In the Mexican city system, most sectors of the population tend to barricade themselves from the rest of the city, spreading the construction of walls that cut off communities. These walls create sharp borders, signalling the inside from the outside of a community, and, as the urban sprawl increased exponentially in the last few decades, opposing neighborhoods with different ideas of community and livelihood tend to confront each other, separated only by a fence.
This thesis has for aim to study and understand the reasons behind the current situation of cities in Mexico, anchored in the historical, cultural, political and economical scenes at a national level, and then at the level of the northern industrial city of Monterrey, which constitutes the case study.
From there, a site of interest, La Loma Larga, serves as an example of confrontation between wealthy neighborhoods and impoverished area. As that specific site hasn’t been completely urbanized nor fenced yet, this thesis explains the reasons behind it, and lastly propose a solution to urbanize it in order to alleviate the most extreme symptoms of urban segregation.

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Salvador Hernandez Gazga

Thesis Supervisor

Toni Kotnik

Thesis Advisor(s)

Pia Fricker, Saija Hollmén

Year of Publication



urban design, inequality, spatial segregation, parametrics, informal settlements, gated communities, Monterrey, Mexico