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Guess what Tower Bridge and London's skyline looks like 125 years from now

PUBLISHED: 07:00 04 July 2019 | UPDATED: 09:12 04 July 2019

Tower Bridge at sunset. Picture: Mike Brooke

Tower Bridge at sunset. Picture: Mike Brooke

Mike Brooke

The iconic Tower Bridge is looking to the 22nd century to celebrate its 19th century construction and this year's 125th anniversary of its opening.

1893... Tower Bridge under construction. Picture: Metropolitan Archive1893... Tower Bridge under construction. Picture: Metropolitan Archive

London's defining landmark was created by the renowned Victorian architect Horace Jones in 1894.

Today's bridge master is now calling designers, artists, architects, engineers and enthusiasts to step into the architect's shoes and work out what London's skyline will look like in 125 years from now.

Chris Earlie is inviting them to follow Jones and his civil engineer John Wolfe Barry to stand on the Thames riverbank and look westwards towards Tower Bridge and the City to imagine the landscape in 2124.

Bridge master Chris Earlie at the controls... hoping to enticeBridge master Chris Earlie at the controls... hoping to entice"the next generation of visionaries". Picture: Mike Brooke

"We want to encourage the next generation of innovators and visionaries to shape London's ever-changing landscape," Chris explains.

"Tower Bridge is central to London's skyline and its cultural heritage. It has seen so much change in the City since 1894—so we look forward to seeing what people envisage 125 ahead."

He is asking the "pioneers of tomorrow" to imagine a cityscape of soaring skyscrapers—"perhaps even 'flying cars' no matter how farfetched or downright weird".

Tower Bridge by night, from St Katharine's. Picture: Mike BrookeTower Bridge by night, from St Katharine's. Picture: Mike Brooke

The contest mirrors the Victorian competition to find a solution to the City's chronic traffic crisis and the call for another Thames crossing downriver from London Bridge without hindering shipping in the Pool of London.

Horace Jones came up with the bascule lifting bridge idea, with the counterweight bascules housed in giant chambers at the foot of two neo-Gothic island towers linked by a pedestrian walkway at the top, above the ships.

 The '2144 skyline' competition is online. Entries by 10am on July 25 in 2D no larger than A3 size, to 'London 2144 Competition at Tower Bridge Offices, SE1 2UP, or digital Jpeg format, maximum 10mb, emailed with downloaded entry forms to marketing@towerbridge.org.uk.

Lady Daphne Thames sailing barge moored at St Katharine's by Tower Bridge.  Picture: Mike BrookeLady Daphne Thames sailing barge moored at St Katharine's by Tower Bridge. Picture: Mike Brooke

Shortlisted entries go on display next month, seen by 3,000 daily visitors. The winner gets to operate the controls to let a ship through and has a trip on the historic Thames barge Lady Daphne berthed at St Katharine's nearby which was launched in 1923—when Tower Bridge was just 29 years old.

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