Rozana Montiel is a Mexican architect whose socially conscious work saw her win the 2019 Global Award for Sustainable Architecture. Understanding the effect her architecture has on people is at the centre of her design philosophy. “To me design is about placemaking, designing as a process not solely as a final product. I pay special attention to people and detail,” she said in a recent interview.

Born in 1972 in Mexico City, Montiel studied architecture and urban design at the Ibero-American University and architectural theory at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, before later founding her own studio, Estudio de Arquitectura.

Over the years, her interdisciplinary team of architects and designers have produced a string of impressive community projects and urban interventions, mostly aimed at transforming disused and dead spaces throughout cities and towns. In 2018, for example, her studio turned a disused basketball court in the Mexican city of Veracruz into a sleek-looking public gathering space with recreational activities, a library and workspace for the roughly 25,000 people living in the surrounding suburban housing complex.


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