This is the extraordinary moment a shopping centre COLLASPED under the weight of a heavy roof garden.
The incident was filmed at the newly-built Artz Pedregal mall in Mexico City on Thursday afternoon.
Shoppers were evacuated from the area just five minutes before the sagging structure crashed downwards, sending shards of glass and metal flying.
Footage shows how the building’s windows began to pop before the support beams eventually gave way, scattering debris into the path of motorists on a busy nearby motorway.
No injuries were reported thanks to prompt action by responders, according to the Mexico City prosecutors’ office.
"We heard a big noise and they began to evacuate us from the plaza,’ one witness said. ‘About five minutes later was when the collapse happened."
Engineers were alerted to the problem when they noticed a separation between the overhang and the the rest of the building.
Experts believe that poor subsoil and the excessive weight of the roof garden was partially to blame for the collapse.
The construction of the mall had been fiercely opposed by locals worried about the loss of open space and concerns over traffic congestion.
The building was built near a rain catchement area basin that regulates the heavy rainfall in the area.
The mall, which was still undergoing partial construction, was completed in March of this year.
Mexico City Mayor Jose Ramon Amieva said that authorities were investigating the collapse and slammed the mall’s construction as a "case of negligence."
The operator of the mall said in a statement that they regretted the collapse and immediately notified authorities when they noticed signs that the structure was collapsing.
At last two traffic lanes were closed of the notoriously crowded Periferico expressway.
In recent years, municipal authorities have encouraged the construction of roof gardens as a way of providing civic space in the notably overcrowded city.
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