WAN Awards 2015


Previous Next

Heydar Aliyev Fire, Baku, Azerbaijan

Wednesday 25 Jul 2012

Fire at Hadid's Cultural Centre

Heydar Aliyev Fire by Zaha Hadid Architects in Baku, Azerbaijan
Image source: Azertag 
Heydar Aliyev Fire by Zaha Hadid Architects in Baku, Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev Fire by Zaha Hadid Architects in Baku, Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev Fire by Zaha Hadid Architects in Baku, Azerbaijan
Your comments on this project

No. of Comments: 1

Add comments | More comments

01/08/12 Noel E., Brisbane
Forgive me for thinking that this might be an 'under the influence' version of Sydney Opera House........... where has originality gone??>


The roof at Zaha Hadid's Heydar Aliyev Cultural Centre in Baku goes up in flames 

A fire broke out atop the roof of Zaha Hadid’s Heydar Aliyev Cultural Centre in Baku, Azerbaijan on Friday 20 July at around 11:30am.

The blaze - in which no one was injured - was extinguished on the same day by around 50 fire engines and a series of helicopters. Police have detained three people in connection with the fire, which is reported to have been a possible outcome of a failure to comply with fire safety regulations during a welding procedure, which was carried out on the roof.

The interior of the building, named after the former KGB chief and ruler of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev suffered no serious or lasting damage, according to the Azeri Ministry for Emergency Situations. The ministry’s major general, Fuzuli Asadov however, told a press conference that around 1,000 sq m of the roof was damaged by the fire.

The Cultural Centre houses a conference hall, three auditoriums, a library, and its main attraction, the museum in its five-storey area. Intended to be a cultural hub for the intellectual and educational life of the city, the building is located close to the city centre, with neighbouring residential offices, a hotel and commercial centre. The facade itself has a form which is fluid, and emerges through its folding design. As the folds carry on inside, the skin ebbs away to merge with its interior.

Located in Baku, the building is one of Hadid’s newer projects, having opened in May of this year to mark the 89th birthday of Heydar Aliyev; the country’s Soviet-era ruler who became president of Azerbaijan in 1993.

He passed away in 2003 after having chaired Azerbaijan’s KGB for more than 20 years, and his career was shrouded in controversy after being accused of human rights violations in the later years of his post-Soviet presidency by Amnesty International. Hadid’s decision to erect a structure in his name has been quite a divisive one, sparking much debate over the past four years.

Samantha Morley

Key Facts

Value 0(m€)
Were you involved in this scheme?
Zaha Hadid Architects

More projects by this architect

Bee’ah Headquarters

Sleuk Rith

The David and Claudia Harding Mathematics Gallery, Science Museum


Tokyo Olympic Stadium

Jockey Club Innovation Tower

City of Dreams Hotel Tower

Dongdaemun Design Plaza

Aquatics Centre

Al Wakrah Stadium

Heydar Aliyev Center

Library & Learning Centre, Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien

Serpentine Sackler Gallery

Related Companies Residential Building

Design Museum

Al Wakrah Stadium

One Thousand Museum

King Abdullah Financial District Metro Station

The Changsha Meixi Lake International Culture & Arts Centre

CityLife Milano

Wangjing SOHO / Meiquan 22nd Century

Japan National Stadium

Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum

Galaxy SOHO

Pierres Vives Building

Zaha Hadid is 'Leading Woman'


Zaha Hadid becomes a dame

NurnbergMesse Exhibition Centre

Innovation Tower, Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Central Bank of Iraq Headquarters

Zaha Hadid Architects

Evelyn Grace Academy

Riverside Museum

Elk Grove Civic Center

Sheikh Zayed Bridge

Guangzhou Opera House


Aquatics Centre

Rabat Grand Theatre

Evelyn Grace Academy

Eleftheria Square

Library & Learning Centre – University of Economics & Business Vienna

Broad Museum Groundbreaking

King Abdullah II House of Culture & Art

Middle East Centre

Broad Art Museum, East Lansing

Aquatics Centre



Zaha Hadid Burnham Pavilion

J.S. Bach at Manchester Art Gallery

Seville University Library

Cairo Expo City

Stone Towers

Guangzhou Opera House

Burnham Pavilion

Regium Waterfront - Museum of the Mediterranean

Dorobanti Tower

Port House

Library and Learning Centre (LLC), University of Economics & Business

Riverside Museum

Venice Biennale

Capital Hill Residence

Farrer Road residential towers

2012 Olympic Aquatic Centre


Zaragoza Bridge Pavilion

Hermitage-Guggenheim Museum

Dellis Cay

Chanel mobile art

Madrid Civil Court of Justice

2012 Aquatic Centre

Eli & Edythe Broad Art Museum

Lilium Tower

The Nordkettenbahnen funicular

Guangzhou Opera House

Innovation Tower for the Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Peninsula of Zorrozaurre

Glasgow Transport Museum

Serpentine Gallery

The Opus Project

City Academy Project

Expocentre Exhibition Halls and Residential Tower Project

Aquatics Centre

Nuragic & Contemporary Art Museum

The Maggie's Centre

Pierres Vives

Forest of towers

Zaha Hadid: 30 Years of Architecture

Edifici Campus

University of Seville - library

Phaeno Science Centre

Aquatic Centre


Click here to view the NEWS IN PICTURES tablet site