2020 NRMA Future of Transport Challenge – Winners

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Students from Year 10 at Bethlehem College, Ashfield won the NRMA Future of Transport Challenge 2020 with the Transport 2 U App, a user-friendly app designed for people with disabilities to allow for convenient, real-time booking of accessible transport services on the Leppington line.

The winning team were selected by judges Nell Payne, Chief of Operating Investments at the NRMA, Dan Maranhao General Manager of Operations at the NRMA and Anthony Pantilas, Operations Analyst at Scentre Group who are the owners and operators of Westfield in Australia and New Zealand. While all four finalists impressed the judges with their new ways of thinking about transport, Bethlehem College stood out for the extensibility of their app and the ability to launch it to a large number of people very quickly, using existing transport.

As part of their prize, the winning team had the opportunity to present their pitch to Stephanie Salter, Director of the Digital Transport Accelerator at Transport for NSW, who works with developing start-ups. The students were commended for their practical transport solution and encouraged to develop their idea further to one day see it come to life in the real world!

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The other finalists were

  • Gilroy Catholic College, Castle Hill (Year 9) with KOLO Transport – a fully enclosed, overhead bicycle track allowing the community of North-western Sydney to use bicycles to get better access to existing public transport and ease traffic congestion in the growing area.
  • Holy Cross College, Ryde (Year 10) with PTG (Post-Covid Transport Gear) – vending machines at busy Sydney train stations stocked with innovative products to keep commuters safe from germs on public transport, including personal magnetic handles and personal suction-powered handles to avoid contact with high-use surfaces.
  • Katoomba High School (Year 8) with DASH (Driver Automated Service and Helicarrier) – a visionary solution to congestion in the CBD with an interconnected network of driverless pods using GPS for navigation and powered by lithium batteries, for environmentally sustainable road and aerial inter-city travel.

The Future of Transport Competition finals are presented as part of the Youth Eco Summit (YES) for secondary schools, Sydney Olympic Park. In 2020 this event was hosted virtually.

Watch it here:


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EDL (Electrical Driverless Loop)

Students from Year 8 at James Ruse Agricultural High School won the NRMA Future of Transport Challenge 2019 with the EDL (Electric Driverless Loop), a bold future transport vision to move the local residents of Parramatta around the key destinations in their area rapidly without needing to fight through the traffic below and disturb the existing roads and infrastructure below.

The winning team excited the judges Nell Payne, Executive General Manager Motoring and Stephanie Salter, Director of the Digital Transport Accelerator at Transport for NSW with the quality of their idea and how it could be adapted to support Sydney’s future master plan which envisages a three “30 minute cities” to house Sydney's growing population.

The other finalists were

  • Davidson High School (Yr 9)—EST (Elevator Space Transportation) - a cost effective and low pollution was to deliver materials to space without costly and polluting rockets.
  • Sydney Secondary College Leichhardt (Yr 10)—The Overbus - a large electrified ‘bus’ on rails travelling over cars on freeways moving people quickly between major transport hubs without being stuck in traffic.
  • Willoughby Girls High School (Yr 10)—WPT (Wheelchair Pod-car Transformer) - a driverless transforming wheel chair/pod car able to deliver independence and mobility to the elderly and the disabled.


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Four finalists pitched their ideas live in front of a panel of transport industry experts comprising of NRMA CEO Rohan Lund, Sue Wiblin (New Mobilities Manager, Keolis Downer) and Michael Apps (Executive Director, Bus Industry Confederation Australia) who questioned them on their research and the effectiveness of their product.


Name of Product or Service


Abbotsleigh College



All Saints Greek Orthodox Grammar School

Wake me app

9 & 10

Sydney Secondary College Leichhardt

Mobile Train Attachment


Waverley College



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MTA (Mobile Train Attachment)

About the winning pitch Mobile Train Attachment from Sydney Secondary College Leichhardt

MTA (Mobile Train Attachment) is series of pods that can attach and detach from a ‘train’ of pods enabling people to enjoy private travel while at the same time being part of an environmentally sustainable mass transport solution.

The students envisaged each individual pod as an electric powered driverless vehicle that could decouple from the train to take passengers to and from their home and then return to the train to conserve energy. Each number of pods could be scaled up or down depending on the time of day and number of passengers making it more environmentally sustainable.


Last year’s finalists delivered four excellent pitches with Moriah War Memorial College voted by the students as the winner.



Masada College


FINN (Fatigue Identification And Notification Network) – a personal digital solution to reduce death and injury on the road arising from fatigue.

Moriah War Memorial College

Passenger – an on demand electric Autonomous Vehicle (AV) car share program.

St Andrew’s Cathedral School

Canopy – redesigning city centres to suit the people who live and work in them, not to suit the cars that we drive.

Waverly College


Ride for Rewards – a reward program for bike riders to reduce traffic around schools and increase active transport and exercise.

Group CEO, the NRMA
Group CEO, the NRMA

Feedback from the teacher of the 2017 winning team - Moriah College

In a changing world, it is critical to equip learners with collaborative and creative problem-solving skills. The NRMA Future Transport Challenge is an excellent platform for Youth to explore and grow these critical skills. During the project, I created a learning ecosystem where students could develop authentic resilience in the design process, learn methods of cooperative innovation, and dare to be experimental.

The winning team’s project, Passenger, is a true demonstration of how a group of Year 10 students applied these skills and solved a real-world problem. Each student contributed uniquely, and together, the team produced a sustainable, mathematically efficient, and original solution for Australia’s future transport system.

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