It is hoped the £2.5 million project will create a 'key' link between proposed new waterfront housing, shops and restaurants at Hale Wharf and Tottenham Hale underground and rail station.
Six undisclosed teams of designers and contractors have been selected to work up designs, which will then be exhibited to local people, giving them the chance to air their views.
The proposals will then be assessed by a panel of judges from British Waterways, CABE, Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, Greater London Authority, and the London Borough of Haringey.
British Waterways' regeneration manager Richard Rutter said: 'This project gives us and local people a fantastic opportunity to shape the future of Tottenham and to breathe new life into its waterside.'
The winner is to be announced in November and the project will get under way in the new year, with completion hoped to be in March 2008.