L.A. Lights the Way, a first-of-its kind competition to design and create a new standard streetlight for Los Angeles, launched this week at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Led by the Mayor’s Office and the Department of Public Works' Bureau of Street Lighting (BSL), the competition will ask applicants to consider how streetlights can incorporate new technology, include a written plaque or other space for text on each pole, and provide shade to help ease the impacts of the climate crisis.
BSL installs 1,000 to 2,000 standard streetlights each year, giving the winner of the competition the chance to shape public-realm design at a dramatic scale and in nearly every corner of Los Angeles. The final design will not impact the standing of historic streetlights already in place across the city. Instead, it will gradually replace the roughly 150,000 standard streetlights currently dispersed across Los Angeles.
“The City of Los Angeles has more than 223,000 streetlights that reflect our history through their beautiful designs,'' said BSL Executive Director Norma Isahakian. “I am so excited that L.A. Lights the Way will allow our basic standard streetlight to be designed to reflect who we are as Angelenos and carry us into the future.”
The competition is open to applicants from across the world, and will award more than $75,000 in prizes — including $70,000 to the overall winner and smaller prizes to high school, college, and graduate school students from across L.A. County. The entries will be judged by a panel of seven experts in design, lighting, and public infrastructure, and the winner will be announced in June 2020. The registration window for all L.A. Lights the Way submissions is now open. More information on the timeline for the competition and other details can be found at LALightstheWay.org.