Sandia LabNews

Middle school teams design cities of the future

Future City Competition logo

Students from 18 rural and urban middle schools took part in the sixth annual New Mexico Future City Competition regional finals at the UNM School of Architecture and Planning.

Each of the 37 teams worked with an educator and mentor skilled in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math to design their vision of a resilient city that could withstand and quickly recover from natural disasters. The students also prepared essays and scale models of their cities and then presented their ideas to a panel of STEM professionals.

winning team at New Mexico Future City Competition
TOP TEAM — The winner, Citta Forte designed by Annunciation Catholic School students, featured smart grid technologies, autonomous vehicles and shock-absorbing buildings.

The students vied for the chance to represent New Mexico at the National Future City Competition in Washington, DC, in February. Eighty-six volunteers supported the event, including 21 Sandia employees.

“Taking a relevant infrastructure challenge and inspiring kids to come up with engineering solutions is just one of many avenues to sustain their interests in science and technology,” said Amy Sun, Sandia engineer and regional coordinator for the New Mexico Future City Competition.

“Middle school students attending this event get new ideas by witnessing other models as well. The New Mexico Future City Competition is very fortunate to have strong community support from two national laboratories, New Mexico professional societies and local businesses.”