The UK’s two most high-profile architects are understood to be involved in separate plans for Battersea Power station in south-west London.

Lords Foster and Rogers have been drafted in by different developers looking to work up extravagant plans for the site, which has lain desolate for decades.

Rogers’ office has confirmed he had an informal meeting recently at the invitation of friends involved with developer Parkview, which currently owns the site, but added that it was not a formal commission.

However, it emerged last week Parkview is in advanced talks to sell a controlling stake in the £1.5bn development to Irish developer Treasury Holdings.

Treasury’s alternative plans for the 38-acre site have been drawn up by Foster and Partners. It is understood that the Irish developer wants to increase the number of homes on the site to make it more commercially viable.

London mayor Ken Livingstone has appointed Peter Bishop as the first director of the new Design for London unit. Bishop is currently director of culture and environment at Camden council.