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Students' plan to improve Glasgow's public transport wins 2022 ICE CityZen Award

17 March 2023

The competition, designed to inspire young people to follow a civil engineering career path, ran for its second year in 2022.

Students' plan to improve Glasgow's public transport wins 2022 ICE CityZen Award
Students from Hillhead High School won the 2022 ICE CityZen Award. From left to right: Teacher Lynsey Robinson, students Carl Hass, Anas Al Aoubaedy, Finlay Hood, Murrad Al Dabbagh and Mentor Mhairi Porteous

A proposal to build a tram line in Glasgow has won a student team the top prize of the 2022 ICE CityZen Award.

The award was designed to inspire the next generation of civil engineers, and help students get a taste of what it’s like to follow this career path.

The competition saw 16-18-year-olds play CityZen, a civil engineering digital game, and submit a video project with a proposal for improvements civil engineers could make in their local area.

Team DirectLink from Hillhead High School presented why they think Glasgow’s transport links in and out of the city are poor and how they haven’t expanded past their original route.

They also highlighted the importance of giving the people of Glasgow access to important hotspots within the city quickly and efficiently.

Their proposal, which won them the Gold Award, envisioned a tram line from the city centre to the airport via Ibrox Stadium and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

The team said: “We're very grateful to take part in this amazing competition and have our suggestion for the wonderful city of Glasgow listened to by the civil engineering industry.

“We really enjoyed the weekly challenges and had so much fun filming our project. We hope our hard work and effort can make a truly positive impact and that this will open up opportunities for us and others in the future.

“We would like to say a special thanks to Mhairi Porteous from Fairhurst who mentored us through the process.”

ICE CityZen Award – winning teams

Gold Award

Anas Al Aoubaedy, Finlay Hood, Murad Al Dabbagh and Carl Hass from Hillhead High School made up the winning team, DirectLink.

Watch their video:

ICE CityZen Award 2022 Gold Award-winner: Team DirectLink from ICE Group on Vimeo.

Silver Award

Team STEMtopia, which included Isabella Dallmann, Elizabeth von Halasz and Megan Bilton from Mayfield School, will be taking home the Silver Award for a plan to implement heat pumps and green rooves on school buildings to cut carbon emissions.

Watch their video:

ICE CityZen Award 2022 Silver Award-winners: Team Stemtopia from ICE Group on Vimeo.

Bronze Award

The Bronze Award is going to Team 594, which included Jay Ambadkar, Edward Pearson, Daniel Windsor and Ben Hastings from Norwich School for a plan to improve the traffic in Norwich by implementing sustainable trolleybuses.

Watch their video

ICE CityZen Award 2022 Bronze Award-winner: Team 594 from ICE Group on Vimeo.

Prizes won

Victory was hard-won in this second year of the competition. Over 100 schools and more than 1,200 students participated.

Award winners will receive cash prizes split between students and their school and will attend a winners’ lunch with ICE President Keith Howells at the ICE HQ, One Great George Street.

The Gold Award winning team have also secured a wave tank from award partner organisation the JBA Trust to boost their school’s geography and science teaching.

As well as the three winning teams, the judges have chosen a highly commended team for their video project that’ll receive a cash prize.

The team that deserves an honourable mention is Nina & the Neurons at Woodford County High School for their video project on infrastructural changes they would like to make to schools in their local area to reduce their carbon footprint.

The teams with the highest game scores will also receive cash prizes:

  • First place goes to team Alfrey & the Rest at Trinity CoE High School
  • Second place goes to team Shush at Trinity CoE High School
  • Third place goes to team DramaAlertNation at UTC Swindon

‘If this is the future of the civil engineering profession, we’re in good hands’

Séan Harris, ICE’s director of membership said it was “amazing” to review submissions from young people all over the UK.

“This is how civil engineers think and address problems. If this is the future of the civil engineering profession, we’re in good hands,” he said.

“Congratulations to all the winners and to every student that took part in the ICE CityZen Award this year. We look forward to seeing what you accomplish in the future.”

The ICE thanks the CityZen Award judges, ICE members Chris North, Kate McStrafick, Lianne Darbinson, Rebecca Wade, Sakthy Selvakumaran and director of the JBA Trust Rob Lamb.

The institution also extends its gratitude to the ICE STEM ambassadors who mentored school teams throughout the competition.

About the ICE CityZen Award

The ICE CityZen Award aims to encourage more young people to apply for civil engineering at university or apprenticeship level.

The CityZen game was created to provide a virtual experience of the career where players work together in teams to mirror the way professional civil engineers collaborate and problem-solve.

Teams also had a civil engineering mentor to get a deeper insight into the industry. ICE STEM Ambassadors worked with students to support and advise them through the process.

As well as being immersed in the digital game and researching information to help them, the game’s most significant real-life aspect was understanding their local area’s needs and how to best demonstrate this with the creative video project.

The award is open to students aged 16-18 attending a UK school. Those interested in taking part in the 2023 ICE CityZen Award as a participant or as a team mentor (must be an ICE STEM Ambassador) should email ICE Careers.

The ICE CityZen Award was made possible by the generosity of the family of late ICE Fellow David Butler who was dedicated to inspiring the next generation of civil engineers.

Take part

The competition starts again for 2023 in the autumn term.

Find out how to take part
  • Fatima Uddin, membership marketing executive at Institution of Civil Engineers