Seven Peaks of Azerbaijan
By Richard High13 February 2009
Azerbaijan's 1 million m2 Zira Zero Island will be a carbon neutral resort and residential development on Zira Island. Situated in the Caspian Sea, in the crest shaped bay of the capital Baku, Zira Zero Island includes the Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) Architects-designed Seven Peaks of Azerbaijan.
Each of the Seven Peaks, the designs of which are based on seven famous mountains in Azerbaijan, will house a residential development. In addition to the Seven Peaks the Master Plan also includes 300 private villas with panoramic views out over the Caspian Sea.
Buildings on the island will be heated and cooled by heat pumps connected to the Caspian Sea. Integrated solar panels will help supply hot water, while photovoltaic panels will help heat the resorts swimming pools and aqua parks.
Waste and storm water will be collected and used in the waste water treatment plant, where it will be cleaned, processed and recycled for irrigation. Solid waste will be processed, composted and turned into top soil fertilizer.
Zira Zero Island will also benefit from the fact that Baku is "the city of wind". By "harvesting the wind" through an offshore wind farm, the island will have its own CO2-neutral power supply.
Commenting on the design, BIG's Bjarke Ingels, said, "What we propose for Zira Zero Island is an architectural landscape based on the natural landscape of Azerbaijan. This new architecture not only recreates the iconic silhouettes of the seven peaks, but more importantly creates an autonomous ecosystem where the flow of air, water, heat and energy are channelled in almost natural ways. A mountain creates biotopes and eco-niches, it channels water and stores heat, it provides viewpoints and valleys, access and shelter."