Zaha Hadid leaves £67m ($81m) fortune, will discloses

Zaha Hadid. (AP)
Updated 17 January 2017
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Zaha Hadid leaves £67m ($81m) fortune, will discloses

Zaha Hadid, the British-Iraqi architect who died of a heart attack at the age of 65 last March, left a fortune worth £67million.
She left a memorable footprint with some of the world’s most breathtaking architectural masterpieces from Glasgow to Azerbaijan.
Hadid bequeathed a lump sum of £500,000 ($616,605) to her business partner Patrik Schumacher. She also left £1.7 million ($2.1 million) to four nieces and nephews, as well as her brother, Haytham Hadid, whose share was £500,000.
The architect was unmarried with no children and left her international design businesses, which account for the bulk of her wealth, in trust.
Her will shows the net value of her estate was £67,249,458 ($81.7 million).
The designer of the London Olympics Aquatics Centre, Guangzhou opera House and Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC) modular complex earned impressive scores across all three smart, or environmental-friendly, building categories.
Among other Saudi buildings designed by the architect include the Urban Heritage Administration Centre in Diriyah, which serves as the head office of the Heritage Museum, an educational institution established to preserve the historic UNESCO world heritage sites of Diriyah and the surrounding Wadi Hanifah Valley. She also designed King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD) Metro Station, which will serve as a key interchange on the new Riyadh Metro network.
Hadid, who was made a dame in 2012 by Queen Elizabeth, became the first female recipient of the Pritzker architecture prize in 2004 and won the Britain’s most prestigious architecture award, Riba royal gold medal.
She was one of the world’s most famous architects with her mathematically inspired curving buildings.
The will shows Hadid is leaving her architecture practice, of which she was the sole owner, in trust. Her company employs more than 400 people and works on projects globally with a turnover of £44 million ($54.3 million) a year.
Hadid gave her executors powers to distribute all or some of the income from her several businesses. The distribution recipients include past, current and future employees and office holders of the companies, and the Zaha Hadid Foundation. The foundation was established to promote architectural education and exhibitions of Hadid’s work.
The will states that “for the moment” the trustees are her executors: Schumacher, Brian Clarke, the artist, Peter Palumbo, the property developer and Rana Hadid, the architect’s niece.
Hadid was born in Baghdad in 1950 and became a revolutionary force in British architecture even though she struggled to win commissions in the UK for many years. She studied mathematics at the American University of Beirut before launching her architectural career in London at the Architectural Association.
Hadid fought hard in her career and had to pay the price of discrimination in such a profession. “There is still a stigma against women. It’s changed – 30 years ago people thought women couldn’t make a building. There is still enormous prejudice though,” Zaha told the Architects’ Journal.
By 1979, she had established her own practice in London – Zaha Hadid Architects – and gained a reputation for groundbreaking theoretical works including the Peak in Hong Kong (1983), Kurfürstendamm 70 in Berlin (1986) and the Cardiff Bay Opera House in Wales (1994).


Father of boy saved in Paris ‘Spiderman’ drama in court

This file photo taken on June 18, 2018 shows Malian immigrant in France turned hero, Mamoudou Gassama addressing the media within a meeting with Mali's president in Bamako. (AFP)
Updated 23 min 42 sec ago
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Father of boy saved in Paris ‘Spiderman’ drama in court

  • The man’s lawyer Romain Ruiz said prosecutors had taken “particularly reductive” elements of the story out of context, but added that the 37-year-old father admitted he had “done something really stupid”

PARIS: When a Malian illegal immigrant rescued a child dangling from a Paris balcony, he was hailed worldwide as a hero — but the little boy’s father will appear in court Tuesday charged with negligence. Mamoudou Gassama, the migrant nicknamed “Spiderman” after footage of his daring rescue went viral in May, has since been rewarded with French citizenship and a job in the fire service. But the four-year-old’s father, who has not been named, faces a potential criminal conviction for leaving the child unattended in their 6th-floor apartment, popping out to buy groceries. Paris prosecutor Francois Molins said at the time of the incident that the father also delayed his return because he wanted to play the popular Pokemon Go game on his phone. The man’s lawyer Romain Ruiz said prosecutors had taken “particularly reductive” elements of the story out of context, but added that the 37-year-old father admitted he had “done something really stupid.” “He is leaving his fate up to the court,” Ruiz said.
He added that the father had left home “for between 30 minutes and an hour” and had taken “precautions” to keep the child safe in his absence. The little boy clambered onto the balcony and appears to have fallen, before miraculously managing to grab the rail of a balcony lower down. Footage of the incident, filmed by a bystander below, shows him hanging over the edge, a neighbor on the adjoining balcony desperately trying to hold onto him. Gassama, 22, then scales the building Spiderman-style and pulls him to safety.
In theory, parental negligence carries a maximum penalty of two years in prison under France’s penal code, and a fine of up to 30,000 euros ($35,300).
But such a sentence is thought unlikely in the case of this father, who has been allowed to keep custody of his son. The boy’s mother was away at the time of the May 26 incident on a trip to France’s Reunion island in the Indian Ocean. Both parents were said at the time to be extremely shaken by the incident but hugely grateful to Gassama.