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Business Observer Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2015 7 years ago

Ringling students conquer Disney contest

Four-person team wins Walt Disney Imagineering Imaginations design competition.

SARASOTA — A four-person team of Ringling College of Art and Design students won first place in the Walt Disney Imagineering Imaginations design competition.

The contest, for college students nationwide, was to take what Disney does best and apply it to transportation within a major city, according to a Ringling press release. Teams were told to create a Disney-like transportation experience that includes station/stops and vehicle designs that reflect the diversity of the city. Stations should also be accessible, energy-friendly and fun.

The Ringling students with the winning project, Elizabeth Fox, Diana Han, John McDonald and Josh Newton, won for a project that re-imagined transportation in New Orleans. The team won $3,000 for the first place finish, in addition to $1,000 for Ringling for sponsoring the group. Judges, according to the statement, looked for a variety of factors, including whether the project provides an engaging guest experience; if there's a good understanding of the local and tourist market in the chosen location; the ability to tell a compelling and engaging story; and knowledge and passion for the Disney brand and Walt Disney Imagineering.

The team's project, called The New Orleans Double Rail, represents a city where the number one challenge is its location below sea level, according to the release. The lower train in the model uses modern-day projection technology to tell the story of the city of New Orleans, the release adds, through creating a magical sightseeing experience.

“We are very proud of the professionalism and creativity shown by the Ringling College team in designing such an innovative and imaginative transportation solution,” Ringling College of Art and Design President Larry Thompson says in the release.

The Imagineering Imaginations contest was founded in 1992. The winning team was honored at an awards luncheon held in Imagineering headquarters in Glendale, Calif. Jan. 30.

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