Heavy rain and hail in Mexico City on Wednesday night caused the collapse of a roof that partially protected the Templo Mayor archaeological site in the capital’s historic center.
However, only minor damage was reported to the temple complex, a popular tourism site that served as the main ceremonial center in the Aztec city of Tenochtitlán.
The 250-square-meter metal roof fell on the House of Eagles, a structure that features carved relief sculptures that depict warriors in procession and blood-letting rituals.
The Culture Ministry said Thursday that the damage to the structure was “minor, recoverable and restorable” and that repairs would begin immediately. President López Obrador also promised that the House of Eagles, where Aztec rulers made preparations for their own deaths, would be repaired.
Leonardo López Lujan, the head archaeologist at Templo Mayor, said on Twitter that the collapse of the roof was a “dramatic” event. He said he was relieved that major damage to the interior of the House of Eagles and its adornments, among which are remnants of painted murals, was avoided.
“I’m not superstitious, but blessed be Tezcatlipoca!” López wrote, referring to an Aztec deity associated with providence and sorcery.
Wednesday night’s rain and hail also caused minor flooding in parts of Mexico City. The capital’s central square, located near the Templo Mayor site, was blanketed in white by hail, which began falling at about 8:00 p.m. There was also lightning and strong wind that toppled trees in several Mexico City neighborhoods.