Jessica Park: A young architect builds a business from the ground up

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Mérida architect Jessica Park has collaborated with Erick Puc since 2021. Photo: Courtesy

Park Estudio defies its youth. 

Founded four years ago by architect Jessica Park Zavala, and in association with architect Erick Puc since 2021, it exhibits a maturity usually gained from many more years of experience.

Jessica’s path to architecture began in Holbox when, as a small child, she would accompany her mother on visits to different houses with an engineer friend of the family. These were her first experiences of how a building can evoke feelings. 

Her interest now centers on how to create different sensations. Aspects such as how the wind flows through a space, the play of light from openings, textures, heights, and volumes.

Accordingly, both space and function are the cornerstones of Park Estudio’s designs. They aim to “create emotions and experiences that, by way of the senses, offer a unique perception in each project.” 

Jessica and Erick’s collaboration came about to ensure the designs were accurately translated from blueprints to reality during construction, often undertaken by an external contractor. They maintain control of all schedules and processes which, in turn, affords them the flexibility to experiment when the opportunity presents itself — repurposing stones from the demolition stage or testing traditional surface finishing techniques.

The general sensibility of the team’s approach couples with personal, environmental, and cultural sensitivities. When working with her first foreign clients, Jessica recognized she needed to entender otra cultura en mi cultura — understand another culture within her own — as a non-Mexican client’s appreciation, perception, and requirements vary. For foreigners, dining rooms designed around entertaining; creating modern, open-plan living spaces within a colonial structure; or wanting to build or accentuate Mexican architectural features, are often important considerations.

Pueblear — exploring local towns — is a favorite source of creative information for the team. Traditional Maya house construction, textures, techniques, and uses of materials are all details that, back in the studio, fuse with current trends and the client’s preferences to bring about refreshing traditional takes on Yucatecan architecture.

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