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Zira Island Carbon Neutral Master Plan

A self-contained island. By combining the best of the traditional Azerbaijani building tradition with the newest technology, Zira Island will provide excellent living spaces for people, with a minimum usage of resources. A showcase to the world combining high-end living with low-end resource usage.

Courtesy of BIG

The Seven Peaks of Azerbaijan proposes an architectural landscape derived from its natural landscape. 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 channeled 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. The Seven Peaks are conceived not only as icons but engineered as entire ecosystems, a model for future sustainable urban development.

Courtesy of BIG

The landscaping of the island is derived from wind simulations of the microclimates created by the mountains. The central park of the island will offer a lush green condition creating the atmosphere of a tropical island. Patterns created by the wind moving its way through the Seven
Peaks will inform the planting of trees and the placement and design of public spaces and plazas. Where the winds and turbulence are strongest the trees becomes denser, creating lower wind speeds and thus a comfortable outdoor leisure climate.

Courtesy of BIG

The coastline of Zira Island is dotted with marinas and beaches. The Island features three different marinas: Kapaz marina at the main port of the island including the shuttle ferry terminal, the large Savalan marina and the Babadagh marina surrounded by holiday apartments with private boat lots. A large beach in the center of the island, as well as a series of smaller lagoons along the coastline, offers a variety of leisure activities

Courtesy of BIG

The master plan is conceived as a series of neighborhoods along the coastline, ranging from
high-density urban areas in the western part of the island to the villas areas in the eastern part. The neighborhoods are tied together by the central public park that leads to the centrally located main beach. The easternmost tip of the island is the location of three grand luxury villas with private beaches and heliport.

Courtesy of BIG

The Zira Island Master Plan is divided into two major phases. Phase 1 encapsulates the the Master Plan the entire island, the design, and construction of the 300 private villas with their own private beach as well as the Kapaz Mountain which includes a 5-star hotel. The ferry terminal and marina adjacent to Kapaz and the landscaping for all of these elements would also be included. All ancillary developments such as ferry terminals and parking facilities on the mainland would also be planned and built during this time. Phase 2 would include the additional six mountain developments, completing the landscaping, the three luxury villas situated within 7 hectares on the northern tip of the island and the offshore windmill farm. The two phases will work independent of one another and are driven by their individual development.

Courtesy of BIG

The heart of the transport system of the island is the network of electrical cars, taxis and shuttle services utilizing the ring road along the park and creating an emission free environment. The shuttle ferry terminal connecting the island to the mainland is centrally located on the north shore facing Baku city. Two heliports on the island provide fast connections to several locations within the capital.

Courtesy of BIG

Zira Island benefits from the fact that Baku is “The wind-swept city”. By harvesting the wind energy through an offshore wind farm, Zira Island will have its own CO2-neutral power supply. The wind turbines will power the entire island, transforming the platforms and foundations of the existing offshore oil industry and replacing the forest of oil towers in the horizon of the Caspian Sea.

All waste water and storm water is collected and led to a waste water treatment plant, where it is cleaned, processed and recycled for irrigation. The solid parts of the wastewater are processed and composted and finally turned into top soil, fertilizing the island. The constant irrigation and fertilizing of the island support the lush green condition of a tropical island, with a minimal ecological footprint.

Courtesy of BIG

Project Info
Architects: BIG
Location: Baku, Azerbaijan 
Client: AVROSITI HOLDING
Engineer: RAMBOLL
Project Management: Kai-Uwe Bergmann
Partner in charge: Bjarke Ingels with Associate Partner Andreas Klok Pedersen
Team: Sylvia Feng, Kinga Rajczyko wska, Pål Arnulf Trodahl , Pauline Lavie , Maxime Enrico, Oana Simionescu, Ale x Cozma , Molly Price , Niels Damsgaard, Doug A. Stechschulte, Ondrej Janku.
Visuals : Oceanpic Ltd
Graphic design: Ernesto Moncada
Type: Master Plan

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