The third annual City-People-Light Awards, established by Philips, were presented at the end of November to three cities-Cologne, Germany; Tampere, Finland; and Cannes, France-each exemplifying the award program's philosophy: that lighting can add value and give an area's cultural and architectural heritage a nocturnal identity, while respecting environmental considerations.

As citizens and municipalities continue to recognize the important role lighting can play beyond just utilitarian and security purposes, cities and towns are reclaiming their outdoor public spaces and transforming them into habitable nighttime environments. Lighting is becoming a vital element integral to city and town planning programs and an aid in creating civic, cultural, and visual identities.

The 2005 competition received 21 international submissions. Chaired by architect and lighting designer Gad Giladi, former ELDA president (2002-2005), the city of Cologne took the top prize of €5,000. Since 1993, Cologne has implemented a city-wide lighting effort to reduce the number of luminaire types, while providing better light quality and energy savings. The city's winning project submission (by a team of both city planners and lighting designers) illuminates several important historical landmarks, including the Hohenzollern and Deutzer Bridges, and the Hanentor city gate, using 'effective but discreet illumination' with a color temperature range of white, warm-white, and yellow light.

The city of Tampere, Finland, received second place for its lighting scheme to enhance building façades and create a more uniform lighting vocabulary for three of its important city squares. Cannes, France, was awarded third prize for its master plan to improve its nightscape using non-polluting, recyclable, and energy-efficient products.