The RIBA has announced the shortlist for the annual architecture awards. Here are the six buildings in the running
London Aquatics Centre, Olympic Park by Zaha Hadid Architects
First revealed during the 2012 London Olympics, ZHA's sweeping structure is now open to the public. Zaha Hadid has won the Stirling prize twice before, for the Maxxi Museum in Rome and for the Evelyn Grace Academy in London.
Seasoned theatre designers Haworth Tomkins rebuilt the established structure in Liverpool – famed for its underground bistro and conspiratorial spaces – over two years at a cost of £27m. In Icon 131, Edwin Heathcode wrote: "The new theatre seems somehow familiar, as if it already bears the traces of time and the scars of use. As if it had always been there."
Manchester School of Art by Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios
This major refurbishment of a 1960s building involved providing studio, workshop and exhibition spaces as well as building bridges to connect the extension to an existing 19th-century structure.
With an intricate facade that twists and folds out of an awkward city-centre site, O'Donnell + Tuomey's 6,000sq m LSE student union is defined by its use of bricks.
London Bridge Tower (The Shard) by Renzo Piano
The mixed-use skyscraper beside London Bridge became the tallest building in Europe in 2011, before being overtaken in 2012. From last year, visitors have been allowed to ascend the 72-storey tower to look down from its 244m-high viewing platform.
Ten storeys high, with gold cladding and neon elevators, Mecanoo's Library of Birmingham is – as we wrote in Icon 125 – a confident riposte to those who predict the end of the library.
Listen to our latest podcast recorded at the top of the Shard – author Leo Hollis discussing London's past and future