Rhoades School students win awards for their Future City designs

Rhoades School’s team Alpha City students work on their Future City proposal Jan. 19 at Grossmont College in El Cajon. (Rhoades School courtesy photo)

North Coast Current

Students from The Rhoades School in Encinitas recently received awards for their work in a regional competition that gave them the chance to create potential solutions to real-world city problems.

The private school’s three teams spent a Saturday at Grossmont College in El Cajon putting their science, technology, engineering and math skills to work at the 2019 Southern California Regional Future City Competition, according to a Rhoades School news release. The combined disciplines are often referred to as STEM.

Twenty-two teams competed in the Jan. 19 event, themed “Powering Our Future.” Students were challenged to design resilient power grids for their proposed future cities that could withstand and quickly recover from the effects of natural disasters. Rhoades students’ teams were called Imperium, Alpha City and Cadenza City.

Imperium placed fourth overall and received the Excellence in Resilience Engineering award. Alpha City placed fifth overall and earned the Best Land Surveying Practices award. Cadenza City received the Most Sustainable Environmental Practices award.

Among the teams’ noteworthy features:

Imperium included underground power lines, smart switches and special foam for strengthening the city’s resilience to wildfires;

Alpha City developed titanium-supported buildings that elevated with hydraulics to protect against river flooding;

Cadenza City had an innovative road design engineered to split and redirect tsunami water into a reservoir to generate hydroelectric power.

Each year, the nationwide Future City Competition launches a theme where competing students in sixth, seventh and eighth grades imagine, research, design and build cities of the future using their knowledge of STEM concepts.

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