Artists will compete for the chance to leave their mark on a £19m revamp of a seaside town centre.
The revamp of the St John's area of Seaham will involve building a health centre, council offices, library and a new public space.
Durham County Council also wants the new square to feature a public artwork and is asking for ideas from artists and the public.
The new square is due to open in March 2012.
Many rundown council and NHS buildings in the existing 1960s precinct will be demolished as part of the regeneration.
The square's new health centre will serve the people of County Durham and Darlington.