Pritzker prize-winning US architects battle it out in race to design new embassy in Battersea

Three Pritzker prize winners are to battle it out in the final stage of the competition to design the new US Embassy in London.

The practices of Thom Mayne, Richard Meier and IM Pei have been shortlisted alongside Kieran Timberlake to create designs for the new building.

The four were selected from a longlist of nine, which included architects Skidmore Owings & Merill and Kohn Pederson Fox, both of which have dedicated UK offices.

The competition was open only to US architects with experience of designing secure buildings, but the US Department of State said it would encourage the shortlisted architects to employ British practices as subcontractors to help deliver the final designs.

The US Department of State said it was seeking a “building and site complex that has timeless quality and represents the United States appropriately in the United Kingdom”.

The four firms will now put together detailed designs of the building and present 3D models to the design jury in November 2009.

The new US Embassy is set to be built in the Nine Elms area of Battersea, but any move is dependent on the sale of the existing embassy building in Grosvenor Square.