Fire At Zaha’s Recently-Opened Heydar Aliyev Center
July 23, 2012
Fire at Heydar Aliyev Center by Zaha Hadid Architects; Photos: AzerTAc
This past February, architects from all over the world watched frightfully as flames seized Le Corbusier’s Unité d’Habitation in Marseilles and grieved when the extent of the damage was revealed. Images of Zaha Hadid’s Heydar Aliyev Center in Baku smoking in the dense summer air over the weekend could never have provoked the same response. Still, the photos are unsettling, with the building’s gleaming white parabolic peak crowned by an ignominious crown of char and an aureole of smoke rising from its crest.
As reported by Today.AZ, the fire rang out in the museum ceiling around 11:30 Friday (July 20) morning, though the flames were contained to the roof exterior. An onslaught of emergency personnel and armory were rushed to the scene in a spectacle of logistics, with large cranes and a helicopter working in tandem to extinguish the inferno before it could spread to the interior. The flames were soon put out, and only cosmetic damages remained (the curious blue quasi-space frame lurking just beneath the milky white cladding was untouched).
The building in pristine condition when it was opening this past May; Photo: Trend.az
Scenes from Friday’s fire