‘Navigating Change: Reimagining the Square Mile’ design competition launched by London Festival of Architecture and City BIDs Back to previous

‘Navigating Change: Reimagining the Square Mile’ design competition launched by London Festival of Architecture and City BIDs

Photo credit: LFA 2012 – Paleys upon Pilers by Studio Weave

Author: London Festival of Architecture


The London Festival of Architecture and the City of London Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) have launched an open call for architects, artists and designers to propose trail of distinct but connected architectural interventions that communicate a narrative about the changing Square Mile and evoke its rich histories.

Architects, designers, and artists are being invited to propose a trail of playful public realm interventions that envision a more welcoming and sustainable city, with possible outcomes including outdoor auditoria, urban furniture, public art, planting, and wayfinding elements to be installed in summer 2024.

Aldgate Connect, Culture Mile, EC BID, and Fleet Street Quarter, are collaborating with the London Festival of Architecture to commission the trail, which will have a budget of £100,000 for the winning team to execute their vision across four sites in the City.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2024, the London Festival of Architecture is calling for public spaces across London to be temporarily reimagined to capture the public’s imagination and inform longer term meaningful changes. Building on LFA’s long history of trialling public realm initiatives in the City, the trail will bring together a series of unique interventions that respond to their local context and are linked by the 2024 Festival theme of ‘Reimagine’

If you’re interested in entering the competition you can attend an online drop-in session on 13 December 12.30pm – 1.30pm. Register here if you would like to attend.

Applicants are invited to submit their applications by midday on 9 January 2024, find out more on the LFA website.

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Ruth Duston OBE, Founder and CEO of Primera, which powers the City of London’s business improvement districts, said: “Our day-to-day lives have changed a lot over the last few years, leading us to interact with London in a new way. This makes it an incredibly exciting time to work with the London Festival of Architecture for its 20th anniversary to commission public interventions that will align with our new ways of interacting with the capital and support Destination City, the City of London’s Corporation flagship policy aiming to develop the Square Mile as a leisure destination.

LFA’s anniversary will also coincide with the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the first business improvement districts in the UK, and we’re looking for original thinkers who will come up with bold ideas that will celebrate these important milestones, as well as showcase the City”

Benjamin O’Connor, Director, NLA said: “We are delighted to once again be working with the City of London BIDs to deliver meaningful interventions that improve the public realm. While it is important to celebrate and reflect on the rich history of these iconic City locations, this competition will also deliver innovative temporary solutions that create a welcoming, inclusive environment for all those that live, work and play in the City today. We look forward to summer 2024 when we will all be able to enjoy the trail with our fellow Londoners!”