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The Legislative Palace of San Lázaro (Spanish: Palacio Legislativo de San Lázaro) is the main seat of the legislative power of the Mexican government, being the permanent meeting place of the Chamber of Deputies (equivalent to the House of Representatives or House of Commons), as well as the seat of the whole Congress of the Union, when the Chamber of Deputies (the lower house) convenes in conjunction with the Senate of the Republic (the upper house; UK House of Lords equivalent). Built in the late 20th century after a 1977 political reform, the complex is located in Mexico City about a mile east of the Zócalo central square, in the Venustiano Carranza borough or district, next to the Palace of Federal Justice. The complex draws its name from its location, as the San Lázaro Railway Station was the former occupant of the grounds where the palace was built.

Legislative Palace of San Lázaro
Palacio Legislativo de San Lázaro
Legislative Palace of San Lázaro
General information
Architectural styleMinimalist, Modern architecture
AddressAvenida Congreso de la Unión No. 66, Colonia El Parque, Delegación Venustiano Carranza C.P. 15960
Town or cityMexico City
Coordinates19°25′49″N 99°07′03″W / 19.43028°N 99.11750°W / 19.43028; -99.11750
Construction startedSeptember of 1979
ClientPresident José López Portillo
Design and construction
ArchitectPedro Ramírez Vázquez, Jorge Campuzano, David Suárez; Restoration Architect: Manuel De Santiago-of Bourbon González Bravo (Manuel De Santiago-de Borbón González Bravo).

History, architecture and restorationEdit

Works of the palace, 1981.

After the Mexican political reform of 1977, the number of deputies of the Chamber passed from 186 to 400, and thus, it was impossible for them to convene in the former meeting place, then known as the Legislative Palace of Donceles, which is now occupied by the Legislative Assembly of the Federal District. Thereupon, construction on a new seat of the Legislative began as a part of a plan of urban restructuring of the sector where the San Lázaro Station was located, on the limit of the Venustiano Carranza and Cuauhtémoc boroughs. Also on the property was built a new Palace of Federal Justice for the functions of the Judiciary branch of the government.

The project, which was promoted by former president José López Portillo, was a faction of a massive development and public works program of the government, resulting from a Mexican petroleum boom. Construction began in September 1979, following the plans of architects Pedro Ramírez Vázquez (who at the time served as Secretary of Settlement and Public Works), Jorge Campuzano, and David Suárez.

The grounds were formally inaugurated on 1 September 1981 as a part of the 5th Government Report (the equivalent of the State of the Union Address in Mexico) of López Portillo, and officially at the installation of the deputies and senators of the LI Legislature of the Congress of the Union.

The building was severely damaged after a fire in 1989, and President of Mexico Carlos Salinas de Gortari had it restored by Mexican architect Manuel De Santiago-of Bourbon González Bravo (Manuel De Santiago-de Borbón González Bravo), a renowned member of ICOMOS (International Council on Monuments and Sites).