The 105 entries to the Illuminated River International Design Competition were made up of 346 individual firms, with nearly half the submissions coming from outside the UK.

The six finalist teams (in alphabetical order) are :

  • Adjaye Associates with Chris Ofili, Thukral & Tagra, Doug Aitken, AKTII, HPF (Hurley Palmer Flatt), Four Communications, DP9, Plan A and DHA Designs
  • AL_A with Asif Kapadia, Simon Stephens, SEAM Design and GROSS.MAX
  • Diller Scofidio + Renfro with L'Observatoire International, Arup, Transsolar, Jennifer Tipton and Oliver Beer
  • Les Éclairagistes Associés with ecqi, ewo, Federico Pietrella, and GVA Lighting Europe Limited
  • Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands with Future\Pace, Leo Villareal, Pentagram, Price & Myers, Atelier Ten, Beckett Rankine and Core Five
  • Sam Jacob Studio and Simon Heijdens with Electrolight, Daisy Froud and Elliott Wood.

The six finalists will now create concept design lighting schemes for four bridges – Westminster, Waterloo, London and Chelsea – along with a design masterplan for the 17 bridges between Albert and Tower.

No design was sought at the first stage. Instead, the decision on who to shortlist was based on experience, past projects and team composition.

The organisers said that the teams’ design challenge is to create an elegant and charismatic light installation that will be forward-thinking and environmentally friendly, enhancing the capital’s status as a low carbon beacon and a world leader in cutting-edge technology and engineering.

Hannah Rothschild, chair of the Illuminated River Foundation, said: “The final shortlist represents an exhilarating mix of talent, inspiration and design approach. In November the finalists’ concept designs will be unveiled, and London will have six possible visions of how the river - and the city - might be transformed after dark.”

Competition organiser Malcolm Reading said: “This shortlist brims with promise: these teams are at the intersection of art, architecture, technology, engineering, film and literature. They have put together fascinating combinations of skills and we expect great things of them.”

Concept designs will go on display to the public in November, in London and online. It is anticipated that jury interviews with the shortlisted practices will take place in late November, with the winner announced in early December.

Illuminated River Competition