Students take part in future-cities contest

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CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago middle-school students are getting a chance to put their virtual skills to use by creating physical models of future cities.

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CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago middle-school students are getting a chance to put their virtual skills to use by creating physical models of future cities.

They’re entering an engineering competition using the popular SimCity software. The game models are used to make table-top models of their creations.

The annual "Future City Competition" is hosted by engineering societies in Chicago.

Students also must write essays on how the country can meet its energy needs while maintaining a healthy planet.

The judging of local entries takes place on Jan. 21 at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The winning school advances to the finals in Washington, D.C. during National Engineers Week — from February 19-25.

Last year, more than 33,000 students across the country took part in the contest.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.

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