The list, which includes 200 finalists, spans commercial, residential and cultural projects, including an open-air Chinese cultural exhibition center in Lanzhou, and a plan to preserve the oldest building in the UAE capital, Qasr al-Hosn.
Meanwhile, a green mangrove park has been restored in the Chinese port city of Sanya after three decades of pollution and development.
But smaller and farther endeavours have also been recognized.
In the remote Swiss Jura mountains, an eccentric green-clad spiral structure rises amid the landscape, housing a new museum by luxury watchmaker Audemars Piguet.
Off the coast of Iran, on the island of Hormuz, a group of tourist residences with colorful domes aim to connect visitors with the local community.
With last year’s World Architecture Festival awards canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year’s shortlist includes architecture projects completed globally between 2019 and 2021.
The winning designs will be determined at the festival next December, when more than 100 jury members will gather in the Portuguese capital, Lisbon, to determine the individual category prizes and to crown one project with the title of Building of the Year.
Here are 10 projects that were shortlisted for the International Architecture Festival Awards
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
The master plan of Qasr Al Hosn, by CEBRA Architecture, preserves a historic building in Abu Dhabi while reimagining the space around it.
Dubai United Arab Emirates
Designed by Grimshaw Architects, Terra will serve as the sustainability pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, which is set to open in October.
Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
The architecture studio Hopkins Architects has built a geological museum in the Buhais area, which was once a seabed basin on the Madame Plain in the Emirate of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates.
The Tourist Reception Center designed by XWG Architecture Studio is located in Zhangjiakou, China, which will host a number of events for the 2022 Winter Olympics (Beijing 2022).
This garden in Sanya, China, has undergone a restoration by architecture firm Turenscape, and has been nominated in one of the two award landscape categories.
Designed by design firm Shanghai United Design Group, this triangular structure sits in a pool of water above the Dysis of Poly Shallow Sea Church, in the Chinese port city of Sanya.
In the Chinese city of Lanzhou, the Chinese Cultural Exhibition Center, designed by “Qingdao Tenyuan Design” and “ECA2” design companies, is located between traditional villages and landscapes.
The Liyang Museum, designed by architecture firm CROX, in Changzhou, China, mimics the surrounding terrain.
Le Brassus, Switzerland
Designed by the architectural firm BIG, the Musée Atelier Audemars Piguet is a watchmaking museum in the remote Swiss mountain town of Le Brassus.
Hormuz Island, Iran
The colorful residences in the Magra Residence project were designed by ZAV Architects, in order to connect tourism with the local community on the Iranian island of Hormuz.