London's Bridges Could Soon Brighten Up the Capital at Night

By James O Malley on at

17 bridges over the River Thames in London could be getting brightened up - as part of a £20m "Illuminated River" art project.

According to The Guardian it's the brainchild of documentary maker and novelist Hannah Rothchild, who is quoted as saying "The Thames is our liquid history and we must reclaim it".

The big news is that the foundation she chairs has today announced a shortlist of six proposals by different architects for how best to light the bridges - which each firm tasked with coming up with plans for four of the bridges: London Bridge, Waterloo Bridge, Westminster Bridge and Chelsea Bridge.

One of the most striking designs is the one above for London Bridge, titled "Invisible Ripples", by Chris Ofili.

You can see the full set of designs on the Illuminated River website, or at an exhibition at the Royal Festival Hall. Disappointingly, all of them appear to be done in fairly good taste.

The good news too, is that it appears that the scheme is going to be entirely privately funded - so you can put down your green-ink pen and save yourself from writing to the Daily Mail in protest.

The foundation has appointed a panel of judges - which includes artists, architects, an academic who specialises in urbanism, as well as London's Deputy Mayor who is responsible for culture. The winning concept will be announced on the 8th December. [Guardian]