Community Center Alfonso Reyes

The Alfonso Reyes Community Center (CCA) is a gathering place for community members where they come to receive classes on computing, guitar, English as a second language and a variety of online courses offered by Tecnologico de Monterrey. It also serves as a learning center where children have access to internet and adults consult information on employment or other household matters.

Alfonso Reyes is an informal community stablished during the 1960s along a ravine and on the edge of a cemetery.  As many other informal communities, Alfonso Reyes lacked the appropriate amenities to support their daily life needs. Therefore, the CCA was established in 2007 as a gathering place where people could come to share, learn and connect with others around and beyond the neighborhood. Over the years, the Alfonso Reyes neighborhood has acquired appropriate infrastructure such as potable water, sewer connection, electricity and the telephone services.   

The CCA was planned, designed and built in collaboration with neighbors, students from the School of Architecture at Tecnologico de Monterrey and Ball State University, volunteers from around the city and the Santisimo Redentor Church organization using participatory strategies. The Alfonso Reyes CCA has also become a place where adults normally hold community meetings and where the kids receive religious classes. The CCA is equipped with six computers and a printer where the neighboring community can consult and print information.

Images and Plans


Technical Description

The Alfonso Reyes Community Center was design and built using a wood pallet modular construction system that can be dismantled once the community is ready to move to a more permanent facility.  The foundation is made of used tires and the building is raise about 45 cm to avoid contact with the ground.  The wall system is made of super-used pallets modules that where prefabricated on site and slowly installed collaboratively.  The building was later covered with a layer of light weight concrete to add insulation value to the walls. The light weight concrete layer was discarded material from a local manufacturing plant and given to the CCA as a donation.

The floor is made of two different materials including a base made of recycled fiber-glass panels that were used as concrete casting molds in their previous life. The other material is OSB as a finishing and then covered with varnish. The roof is composed of a layer of recycled wood, a layer of re-used polyurethane and a layer of second-hand thin metal.  The roof was also design to eventually receive a set of panels powered by the sun and to collect rain water. 

The building was put together with the help of children and adults from the community during a summer period where students from different disciplines came together to collaborate.  Most funding for the construction came from the community who raise money by selling food, clothes at festivals where games and rides were available for a change in support of the project.  Economic support also came from the local church and companies around the community.


Architecure students from Tecnologico de Monterrey , Architecure students from Ball State University
Pastoral social del Santisimo Redentor
Rosa Maria Benitez
Collaborating Organisations
Project Implementation
Alfonso Reyes community
John Motloch
Mario Sing and Students from Tecnologico de Monterrey
Eigh students from Ball State University
inkind and labor
Alfonso Reyes commnunity members

Academic Discipline(s)
Architecture, busines, chemestry, civil engineering, computing, digital design, industrial design, sustainable development, medicine, mecatronics, political sciences, agronomy, industrial engineering.
150 Students
Academic Level(s)
upper level students
Academic Facts

Site / Structure Dimension
The Alfonso Reyes Community Center is a 20 M2 computing room sitting on a 200 m2 lot adjacent to a ravine
2040 €
510 €
In Kind
Most labor was provided by community members and students at no charge. In addition, the community provided food for people during the construction process. Tec de Monterrey donated 6 computers where kids and adults receive classes and check info.
Other Budget
The engineering school provided the topography studies a not cost and conducted mechanical studies of the soil. The payment of thes last studies was done by the community members by selling food, used clotes and ruffles.
Project Start
Additional comments
The CCA is runned by a community member who is trained by TEC de Monterrey to teach community members basic computing skills and offers the community free courses made available through the internet.
Transportation of Skill
Project Context
Project Type
Care / Education
Construction Methods/Techniques