Future City contest team tackles transportation issues

At Facil Mudando, cargo travels by dirigible, or underground tube.
At Facil Mudando, cargo travels by dirigible, or underground tube.

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - Some Huntsville City Schools students are headed into national competition with their vision of the city of the future.

The students at the Academy of Science and Foreign Language, who call their team the "Geeksters," are drawing up their plans for their trip to Washington for a big competition, a trip that involves another journey to the city they call Facil Mudando.

"Facil Mudando. It means 'easy moving' in Spanish," explained seventh-grader Lauryn Sisk.

The virtual city, now built into a model, is the academy's entry into the nationwide Future City competition. The academy's team put it together to address this year's challenge: transportation and creative ways of making it work.

"It was challenging because we had to think out of the box," said eighth-grader Jaqueline Martinez.

At Facil Mudando, cargo travels by dirigible, or underground tube; passengers can road-trip in high speed "muni-cars" or monorails. The contest demands students come up with solutions rooted in the real world of technology, economics, government and science.

"The judges are usually engineers and they ask them questions at the end of their presentation," said teacher Angela Traylor.

Last weekend, the Academy team won regional competition. Facil Mudando now goes to the National Future City Contest in Washington.

"It was a rush of excitement and relief because we've put so many hours into this project," said eighth-grader Abbey Dutton.

Students said their city should inspire anyone struggling with getting from place to place. "A lot of times I hear people say they hate transportation. I just think back and say, 'If you were in Facil Mudando you wouldn't be having that problem,'" said seventh-grader Xavier Ziyenge.

The national finals in the Future City competition will begin Feb. 15 in Washington DC.

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