London's Illuminated River project to be 'longest public art commission in the world'

14/01/2019
Dominic Browne

FM Conway has secured the first phase of the Illuminated River project, which once completed will span 4.5 nautical miles of the River Thames and be the longest public art commission in the world.

Designed by artist Leo Villareal and architects Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands, Illuminated River will see the installation of lighting artwork on up to 15 central London bridges, from Albert to Tower Bridge.

'The artwork will subtly unfold compositions of sequenced light patterns across the bridge structures, using dynamic colours and shifting hues inspired by the Thames paintings of Impressionist Masters and English Romantic artists,' FM Conway said.

'Illuminated River’s energy-efficient LED technologies, smart networks and customised software will provide a long-term sustainable lighting solution for the bridges. Using networks of responsive LEDs, the project will reduce existing energy consumption and light pollution on the river , lowering levels of light spill into the river. Illuminated River will provide an improved environment for the Thames flora and fauna, addressing the environmental impact of existing light pollution.'

FM Conway has been awarded the contract for the first phase of the project, which will see the business install lighting on London, Southwark, Cannon Street Railway and Millennium Bridges.

The infrastructure firm will work closely with the Illuminated River Foundation, the charitable organisation set up to deliver the project. Initial works will begin in early 2019, with completion scheduled for summer 2019.

Through its long-term relationships with over half of London’s boroughs, FM Conway already has responsibility for over 850 bridges and highways structures across the capital, including key Thames River crossings and up to 150,000 lights.

It also worked with the Greater London Authority to deliver a colour-changing LED lighting system on seven of the capital’s bridges for the 2012 Olympic Games.

Ed Barford, head of structures at FM Conway, said: 'This project brings together our expertise in lighting and structures to help deliver a unique artwork for the capital. The bridges across the River Thames are integral to how Londoners and visitors alike identify with, and travel through, the city and we are looking forward to working with the Illuminated River Foundation to deliver such an exciting project.

'This first phase will see FM Conway light up four of the capital’s best-known bridges, setting the standard for the rest of the initiative.' 

Neil Mendoza, chair of the Board of Trustees at the Illuminated River Foundation, said: “The Illuminated River project will be an art commission on an unprecedented scale – using light to boost connectivity, economic activity and public enjoyment of the city at night, whilst improving conditions for the natural environment in and alongside the river.'

Highways jobs

Head of Programme Management Office

Manchester City Council
£60,857 to £65,865
As the Head of PMO, you will define and maintain standards for project management within the Highways Service. Manchester, Greater Manchester
Recruiter: Manchester City Council

Highways Development Specialist

Manchester City Council
£60,857 to £65,865
Seeking a highly capable strategic leader to join the team to develop our strategic pipeline of works and financial model. Manchester, Greater Manchester
Recruiter: Manchester City Council

Civil Engineering Technician Apprentice

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£214 per week
Are you looking to gain vital work experience as an Apprentice? London (Greater)
Recruiter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Assistant Planner/Planner

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£19,554 - £32,878
The ideal candidate will already have... Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Principal Engineer

Liverpool City Council
£37,849 - £42,683
The successful candidate will... Liverpool, Merseyside
Recruiter: Liverpool City Council

Environmental Health Officer (Food, Health & Safety) & Environmental Health Technical Officer

Dacorum Borough Council
£24,710 to £39,034
You will be highly motivated and be expected to deliver against a challenging work plan. London (Greater)
Recruiter: Dacorum Borough Council

Street Cleansing Operative Driver (Large Goods Vehicles)

Redbridge London Borough Council
£22,377 to £23,607
We are looking to recruit staff for both our day service and evening service. Redbridge, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Redbridge London Borough Council

Street Works Officer

Enfield London Borough Council
£29,766 to £30,708
he Network Coordination Team are looking for an enthusiastic self-motivated person to join its Street Works Team. Enfield (City/Town), London (Greater)
Recruiter: Enfield London Borough Council

Traffic Management Group Manager

Devon County Council
£61,593
This is an exciting time for the Service with the immediate introduction of a new Permit scheme and significant programme of redesign and... Devon
Recruiter: Devon County Council

Senior Technical Officer (Highway Assets & Infrastructure)

Newport City Council
£30,507 - £33,799 pa
The post holder will report directly to the Assets and Infrastructure Team Manager and will provide a technical lead on... Newport (Casnewydd)
Recruiter: Newport City Council

Principal Engineer (Highway Safety)

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£30,507 - £38,813
Are you looking for an opportunity to work as a Principal Engineer, whilst still being able to develop your career and have a good work-life balance? Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Principal Engineer (Highways Operations)

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£30,507 - £38,813
Are you looking for an opportunity to work as a Principal Engineer, whilst still being able to develop your career and have a good work-life balance? Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Principal Engineer (Highways Structures)

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£30,507 - £38,813
Are you looking for an opportunity to work as a Principal Engineer, whilst still being able to develop your career and have a good work-life balance? Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Principal Engineer (Street Lighting)

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£30,507 - £38,813
Are you looking for an opportunity to work as a Principal Engineer, whilst still being able to develop your career and have a good work-life balance? Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Legal Officer - Planning and Highways

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£26,999 - £29,636
Kirklees Legal Services is one of the largest legal practices in the area and carries out and commissions legal work required by the Council Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Road Safety Engineer / Road Safety Auditor (all levels of experience)

TMS Consultancy
By negotiation
Purpose of the Job Depending on individual experience, candidates will be involved in a range of road safety engineering and traffic management pro... Coventry
Recruiter: TMS Consultancy

Green Space Partnership Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£30,066 - £34,538
You will have excellent written and presentation skills including experience of preparation of reports, briefings, minutes of meetings and... Camden, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Camden London Borough Council

Road Safety and Sustainable Transport Assistant

Telford & Wrekin Council
SCP 13-17 - £11.41 - £12.35
Exciting opportunity to join Telford & Wrekin Council’s Highways, Transport & Engineering, Road Safety & Sustainable Transport Team. Telford, Shropshire
Recruiter: Telford & Wrekin Council

Highways Operative

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£18,426 - £21,166 (plus 20% enhancement if working in the night team)
Looking for Highways Operatives to work as part of the operations teams at Kirklees Council. Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Highways on Fridays

Register now!

Latest Issue

latest magazine issue
  • Highways England at Westminster
  • Traffex Scotland and Bridges Scotland guide
  • Highways Awards winners
View the latest issue

Latest Video