Daniel Madariaga Barrilado is a Mexico City-based entrepreneur working to deliver innovative and ecological solutions for the future of sustainability initiatives in the country, focused primarily in construction and mobility. Promoting green construction while combating air pollution and traffic congestion, Madariaga is directly responding to the needs of a growing urban area, positioning Mexico City to be a global leader in bold and sustainable solutions. As a prominent figure in the MaaS (Mobility as a Service) movement, Daniel Madariaga works to provide advanced, efficient and modern mobility applications to a bustling metropolis of nearly 9 million residents – the second largest city in the Western Hemisphere.
Madariaga graduated from the EGADE School of Business at Monterrey Technological University – a program internationally distinguished for a tradition of entrepreneurship. According to EGADE, the school prides itself on creating global business figures that lead through sustainability to change the world: “[Your} company’s growth should not be opposed to the requirement of social and environmental responsibility,” reports the EGADE credo. “It is essential to incorporate sustainability in the organization’s strategies. In EGADE we develop upright and responsible leaders, who impact society positively.”
Another of Daniel Madariaga’s areas of expertise is in the formation of new urban areas that employ sustainable architecture and innovation, dubbed futuristic “smart cities.” These cities adopt concepts like “smart parking,” and use technology to improve governance, planning, management and livability by gathering real-time data. The smart parking industry continues to evolve as an increasing number of cities struggle with traffic congestion and inadequate parking availability, and several cities around the world are already beginning to trial self-parking vehicles, specialized AV parking lots and robotic parking valets. Madariaga is working with industry leaders in the country to introduce plans for parking solutions for Mexico City moving into the new decade.
Where did the idea for [Insert Company Name] come from?
I was born in Mexico City, and I have seen the city grow and change tremendously from my youth. I was always interested in the ways that the city shifts to new models and transforms around its citizens to accommodate growth and innovation. After EGADE, I was empowered to apply sustainability models to new business practices and have always thought about how we could make our every day smarter and more sustainable.
The idea to use sargassum as new building materials came from a deep demand in the community to figure out solutions for a growing problem. Due to changing climates, the algae was proliferating on our coasts and affecting tourism – but a revolutionary idea turned this waste into a new renewable resource. We quickly found that sargassum bricks were less expensive than traditional building materials and even more durable. Not only did we find that construction costs would be reduced by up to 50 percent, but it has been proven that sargassum blocks have a longer useful time compared to cement, with a durability of up to 120 years. Another factor for which we promote this construction model is that they could be used to build houses or buildings anywhere in the country, under any kind of weather. This trend is now sweeping coastal areas while new developments are surely on the horizon. These strategies to take advantage of resources that were once wasteful will contribute to the creation of smart cities that will make their own resources and their own energy. We build these ideas brick by brick – one idea on top of another – to reach new innovations along with new, eco-friendly options.
Currently, we’re working to fight against traffic congestion in Mexico City – another idea that is wrought out of necessity as the city becomes less and less drivable. Automated parking is an idea that would start to chip away at the major issues, and we see really smart solutions at work in other cities around the world. There’s a fully automated garage in operation in Colorado using lasers to scan cars in and robotic valets to park; vehicles are transported by a robotic dolly to lift and transfer to storage racks, allowing access for more than four times its previous capabilities in the same amount of space. If we think of this on a larger scale – the ability to use smart compacting to free up four times more space in the city – the applications could change our landscape of traffic and useable space in our cities.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I actually don’t have a “typical day.” It’s normal to have four or five meetings on the agenda before lunch time, but these conferences can range between managers, city leaders and planners, construction operators and media. Productivity is only achieved with organization! My day is blocked off methodically with little room for overflow, so I meticulously keep track of meeting time as well as personal time throughout the day in order to maintain a strict schedule.
I wake up every morning around 5am, exercise – meditation – shower – breakfast – and out the door usually around sunrise about 7am. I like keeping my morning routine consistent throughout the week and follow the same practice on weekends. I find I am my most productive in this morning time with personal reflection and new ideas. After meetings and lunch, I like to regroup the events of the day and organize accordingly for the week ahead.