2016 Aga Khan Award for architecture shortlist announced

Zaha Hadid among architects shortlisted for 2016 Aga Khan Award

The late Zaha Hadid's first building in the Arab worldIran's largest pedestrian bridge and a floating school in Nigeria are among the 19 projects competing to win $1 million in the 2016 Aga Khan Award for Architecture (+ slideshow).

BIG's huge urban park in Copenhagen, a power station in Baku and a university in Morocco are also shortlisted to win the triennial award, billed as one of the most lucrative architectural prizes in the world.

Issam-Fares-Institute-by-Zaha-Hadid
Issam Fares Institute, Beirut, Lebanon; by Zaha Hadid Architects

Other projects recognised include an open-air community centre in Bangladesh, Jean Nouvel's latticed Qatar tower, a library built around an ancient archeological excavation in Spain and a children's library in a Beijing hutong.

Superkilen, Copenhagen, Denmark; by Superkilen, by BIG, Topotek1 and Superflex
Superkilen, Copenhagen, Denmark; by BIG, Topotek1 and Superflex

The Aga Khan Award is awarded in recognition of architecture and infrastructure projects that demonstrate design excellence, but also address the needs and aspirations of societies where Muslims have a significant presence.

Tabiat Pedestrian Bridge, Tehran, Iran; by Diba Tensile Architecture/Leila Araghian, Alireza Behzadi
Tabiat Pedestrian Bridge, Tehran, Iran; by Diba Tensile Architecture. Photograph by Mohammad Hassan Ettefagh

The 19 selected projects cover 14 different countries, including Senegal, Kosovo and Jordan. They include three projects in Iran, where the gradual lifting of economic sanctions is paving the way for a generation of young architects to find work.

They were chosen from a longlist of 348, by a panel of judges that included architects Emre Arolat and Dominique Perrault, as well as Mohsen Mostafavi, dean of Harvard's Graduate School of Design, and Columbia University philosophy professor Akeel Bilgrami.

Guelmim School of Technology, Guelmim, Morocco; by Saad El Kabbaj, Driss Kettani and Mohamed Amine Siana
Guelmim School of Technology, Guelmim, Morocco; by Saad El Kabbaj, Driss Kettani and Mohamed Amine Siana

A team of architects, conservation specialists and structural engineers will now visit each of the projects and produce a detailed assessment. The judges will use these reports to decide which projects might be given a share of the $1 million (£700,000) prize.