Through two semester-long projects in collaboration with Ford Motor Company, Gravity Sketch and American Chemistry Council, CCS students showed off their sustainable vehicle designs for the future of transportation.

Detroit, MI, Feb. 19, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The College for Creative Studies (CCS) is proud to announce the successful completion of two groundbreaking projects sponsored through the Transportation Design program during the Fall 2023 semester. These two projects, carried out separately in collaboration with Ford and Gravity Sketch and  American Chemistry Council, demonstrate the College’s commitment to fostering creativity, sustainability, cutting-edge design and innovation for the future of automotive technology.

Throughout the semester, graduate and undergraduate Transportation Design students delved into various aspects of future mobility, considering factors such as lifestyle habits, urban green spaces, deconstruction, reuse and the enhancement of current transportation systems. By leveraging these sponsored projects, CCS students demonstrated their understanding of sustainability considerations and the potential of these materials to address human and environmental challenges. 

The project "Conceptual Vehicle Design for Ford Using Gravity Sketch" challenged graduate and undergraduate students to envision the future of Ford vehicles in the year 2050. Students used Gravity Sketch as a virtual studio in VR, to design conceptual vehicles at 1:1 scale that were suitable for a road trip in various nations across the world. They continued using the software to build out the surrounding creative environment to support the storytelling of their work.

One student group designed a vehicle that could transport a band from Brisbane to Sydney, Australia. The vehicle has spaces for sleeping, writing and recording music. It can stop in different locations and transform into a mobile concert station, allowing the band to perform wherever and whenever they choose. Due to its adaptable design, the vehicle can also serve as a mobile blood bank or ambulance.

Celebrating 20 years of collaboration between CCS and American Chemistry Council, the project “Close-Loop Production and Recycling in Future Mobility,” encouraged undergraduate and graduate students to design an electric vehicle for the year 2050 that featured sustainable plastics and composite solutions. The students were asked to pay close attention to the deconstruction process and design an end-of-life reuse and recycling system.  The project emphasized the importance of green space initiatives and harmonious urban environments that had a positive impact on daily life. 

Students were challenged to produce digital models with animations and storyboard graphics and shared a final presentation that included models of their conceptual vehicles. Both physical and digital models showcased the students’ craftsmanship and attention to detail, while the storyboard graphics provided insights into the vehicles’ circular economy principles and user experience.

Inspired by the future of American railway travel, one student designed a fully autonomous intermediary electric vehicle that can transport individuals and objects to the train station. The vehicle itself is able to board the train and disembark at its destination. The vehicle was imagined as completely constructed of recyclable plastics, polyethylene and polycarbonate. Toward the end of its life cycle, the vehicle would be deconstructed, its former parts being used to build the next edition of the same vehicle. 

These sponsored projects not only provide students with hands-on experience in cutting-edge design and sustainability, but also valuable insight into the minds of industry professionals. CCS continues to be at the forefront of preparing the next generation of transportation designers to tackle the challenges and opportunities of the future. 

“Our longstanding partnership with CCS has helped forge a new era in transportation design focused on eliminating plastic waste in the environment,” Gina Oliver, Senior Director Durable Markets Advocacy at American Chemistry Council said. “ACC’s vision for sustainability is at the core of everything ACC and our members stand for and together through our work with CCS and the automotive industry, we are working to create the innovative sustainable materials necessary for a circular automotive industry. This transformative industry change must begin first and foremost with automotive design. CCS is a preeminent school in transportation design and for the past 20 years, its students have been a huge part of the sustainable future that ACC and its members are working to achieve in this industry. These visionary budding automotive designers are truly the future of automotive sustainability and circularity.” 

The College for Creative Studies (CCS) is a nonprofit, private college authorized by the Michigan Education Department to grant Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. CCS, located in midtown Detroit, strives to provide students with the tools needed for successful careers in the dynamic and growing creative industries. CCS fosters students’ resolve to pursue excellence, act ethically, engage their responsibilities as citizens, and learn throughout their lives. With world-class faculty and unsurpassed facilities, students learn to be visual communicators who actively use art and design toward the betterment of society. The College is a major supplier of talent to numerous industries, such as transportation, film and animation, advertising and communications, consumer electronics, athletic apparel, and many more. Its graduates are exhibiting artists and teachers, design problem solvers and innovators, as well as creative leaders in business.

Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan, committed to helping build a better world, where every person is free to move and pursue their dreams.  The company’s Ford+ plan for growth and value creation combines existing strengths, new capabilities and always-on relationships with customers to enrich experiences for customers and deepen their loyalty.  Ford develops and delivers innovative, must-have Ford trucks, sport utility vehicles, commercial vans and cars and Lincoln luxury vehicles, along with connected services.  The company does that through three customer-centered business segments:  Ford Blue, engineering iconic gas-powered and hybrid vehicles; Ford Model e, inventing breakthrough EVs along with embedded software that defines exceptional digital experiences for all customers; and Ford Pro, helping commercial customers transform and expand their businesses with vehicles and services tailored to their needs.  Additionally, Ford provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company.  Ford employs about 177,000 people worldwide.  More information about the company and its products and services is available at

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) Plastics Division supports sustainability initiatives that are conducted in accordance with principles that conserve resources and minimize the environmental and health impacts of plastics and plastic products. We’re working to end plastic waste while lowering carbon emissions throughout the plastics lifecycle. Plastics help us ensure greater sustainability by lowering greenhouse gas emissions and saving energy at home, work, and on the road. We’re committed to combining innovation with sustainability for a lower carbon future and a circular economy for plastic. Learn more at

Founded in 2014, Gravity Sketch is on a mission to revolutionize the way we bring ideas to life, and fundamentally change the way product design is done today. The platform enables everyone involved in the product design process to work collaboratively in 3D and at scale; teams can express ideas, iterate, share and review in a virtual studio, from first sketch to final build. Gravity Sketch is currently used by top Automotive, Apparel & Footwear, and Film studios around the world.


CCS Transportation Design Arturo Rodriguez

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