New York - Capital Region

Regional Coordinator: Diane Bertok & Greg Skiba


Changes to the 2021-22 Year

These changes supercede the description provided in the "Competition Requirements" section below. For further details check out the "2021-22 Rules Handout" at the bottom of the page. Total possible points is 218. The breakdown is: 

Project Plan: 10 points
City Essay: 54 points
City Model: 55 points
City Presentation: 50 points
City Q&A: 49 points

Sim City is no longer part of the Future City Program. 

Competition Requirements

The Future City Competition program is open to 6th, 7th and 8th graders. Total possible points: 258

I. Design the City (48 pts)

  • Cities may be designed in any region. Teams may share resources and services with cities in other regions, but may not place all their polluting industries or budget busters in an adjacent city.
  • Students select/create two goals and present their city's progress in achieving these goals via a PDF of the Virtual City Presentation Template, completed in Powerpoint, Word, or Google Slides.
  • Students show progress in their city by taking screenshots at two different phases listed below: 

Progress Report I: Suggested population range - 8,000-20,000 Sims

Progress Report II: (Final City) Suggested population range - 20,000+

  • There are no restrictions on the environment, location or celestial body where the city exists.
  • Use the provided template and do not add slides to the template.
  • Sandbox mode is not allowed, and turn off random disasters.
  • Select a city name to be used on all requirements of the competition.
  • Cheat codes are discouraged, but not forbidden from being used to build the city.
  • SimCity Manual, Tutorial Presentation and Tutorial Video are on the national site.

II. City Essay (60 pts)

  • The team will write an Essay (max. 1500 words) on what makes their city special, futuristic, and innovative and provide their solution to an assigned engineering-related topic. This year's topic is:
    • Clean Water: Tap Into Tomorrow
      Choose a threat to your city's water supply and design a resilient system to maintain a reliable supply of clean drinking water.
  • At least 3 sources of information must be cited on the essay reference page using Modern Language Association (MLA) format (Wikipedia may not be used as a reference).
  • The essay must be submitted as a word processing document (.doc), not as a PDF.
  • Place the word count at the end of the document. Word count does not include the title and reference list, but does include captions and words that appear within a graphic, illustration, or table. A maximum of four graphics and illustrations are allowed. 

III. Build the City (70 pts)

  • The team will build a 3-D Model of a section of their city. The section is a creative representation that best represents the team's vision of a section of their city (similar to their computer design) and is not required to look exactly like the computer design.
  • The model may be no larger than 25" (W) x 50" (L) x 20" (H). During the presentation, it is permissible to have extended parts, such as access doors, compartments, and hinged pullouts, as long as they are fully self-supported by the model, or - if removable - held by a presenter. 
  • Rotating city models are acceptable, but the model will be measured from the tabletop up, including dimensions of any turning device below the model itself. Vertically oriented city models are not accepted.
  • Model must contain at least one moving part such as transportation, power generation, or communications. Designing your own moving part, or creatively modifying an existing item, will earn more points than using a pre-fabricated or purchased item. Power sources must be self-contained.
  • The model must be built to scale as defined by the team. A maximum of two scales may be used. 
  • Students will choose the materials for building the model. Material costs for the entire project may not exceed $100 (cash and in-kind). Students are encouraged to use recycled items, this includes "dumpster diving" recyclables as well as household recyclables such as plastic, glass, and tin.
  • If 3D printing is used as part of the model, be sure to use the following values listed on Page 86 of the Handbook to accurately record the cost. 
  • No audio or sound may be used as part of the model.
  • No perishable or food items or live animals may be used in the model. Hazardous items (i.e., dry ice) are also not allowed. If water is used on the model, it must be self-contained or drainable.
  • Include a 4 x 6 inch Model Identification Index Card to be displayed next to the model including:
    • a) city name
    • b) scale(s) used for the model
    • c) school/organization name
    • d) names of the three presenting students, the teacher coach, and the engineer mentor.

IV. Communicate Results/City Presentation (70 pts)

  • The team will prepare a verbal presentation of their city (max. 7 minute presentation, 5-8 minute question/answer period). Presentations should be well polished.  
  • Students may use visual aids such as flip charts, foam boards, poster boards, etc. that adhere to these parameters: the display(s) must be standard size (24" x 36" for poster boards, 25" x 30" for flip charts, and 36" x 48" for tri-fold boards); up to two poster boards or flip charts may be displayed concurrently, or one tri-fold board displayed at one time. The size does not include the easel, which will be provided.
  • Other Demonstration Aids such as pointers, brochures, small mock-ups, etc. used to assist with the presentation must collectively fit within a 6" x 6" x 12" volume (shoe box). If the team chooses to provide handouts/brochures, they must be limited to one 8.5" x 11" sheet of paper. All demonstration aids including handouts and costumes must be included on the Expense Form as part of the $100 maximum.
  • Laptops, DVD/video players, mobile devices, drones, iPods, iPads, overhead projectors, audio equipment, etc. may not be used for the presentation.

V. Project Plan (10 pts) 

  • Project Plan Part 1: Set goals. Students describe what they hope to achieve by the end of the project. They also ensure goals are realistic by identifying resources, constraints, and assumptions. 
  • Project Plan Part 2: Create a schedule. Students plan how they'll complete each deliverable. 
  • Project Plan Part 3: Conduct check-in sessions. Students monitor their project's progress to keep on schedule and meet their goals and see where the plan needs tweaking.
  • Project Plan Part 4: Reflect on the project. Students reflect on what they did and how they did it, a great way to prepare for the competition and make their next projects easier.

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