As part of the former Soviet Union, the urbanism and architecture of Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan on the Western coast of the Caspian Sea, was heavily influenced by the planning of that era. Since its independence in 1991, Azerbaijan has invested heavily in modernising and developing Baku’s infrastructure and architecture, departing from its legacy of normative Soviet Modernism.
Zaha Hadid Architects was appointed as design architects of the Heydar Aliyev Center following a competition in 2007. The Center, designed to become the primary building for the nation’s cultural programs, breaks from the rigid and often monumental Soviet architecture that is so prevalent in Baku, aspiring instead to express the sensibilities of Azeri culture and the optimism of a nation that looks to the future. The Heydar Aliyev Centre, constructed over 57,519m², is a complex of buildings designed by the Iraqi-British architect, Zaha Hadid, which stands out for its architecture and fluid, curved style which avoids sharp angles.
Situated close to the centre of the city, the site has a fundamental role in the re-urbanisation of Bakú, Republic of Azerbaijan, on the Western coast of the Caspian Sea. The Heydar Aliyev Cultural Centre represents a fluid form which emerges from the folding of the natural landscape of the countryside and from the wrapping of the individual functions of the interior. All the functions, together with the inputs, are represented as folds in a single, continuous exterior surface. This fluid form provides the opportunity to connect the diverse cultural spaces and, at the same time, proportion to each element of the Centre its own identity and privacy. Following the interior folds, the skin wears away to convert into more of an element of the interior environment. According to its principal contractor, DIA Holding, the forms of the 57,519m² Cultural Centre give the impression of the lightness of a handkerchief waving in free-fall.
As Koniküre, we have worked with the project on the shell-plating stage of the construction. With a total area og 90.000 squaremeters of shell-plating, we have conducted the planning, project management, production and implementation of isolation shields as well as shell-plating systems.