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About the Happy City Hackathon

One of the flagship events of the Summit is the Happy City Hackathon. It is a collaborative, hands-on activity that will bring together citizens of Andhra Pradesh to envision, plan and develop a plot on the waterfront in Vijayawada with coaching and support from design experts. The hackathon is based on the concept of ‘tactical urbanism’ that is gaining popularity in cities around the world.

What is tactical urbanism? Click here to know more

What is ‘tactical urbanism’?

To know more about ‘tactical urbanism’, you can refer to:

For the Happy City Hackathon, we have shortlisted a site on the Punnami Ghat in Vijayawada, the boarding point for ferries to Bhavani Island. The area of the identified plot is approx. 250 – 300 square metres.

Location of
Punnami Ghat

Open in Maps

We are looking for ideas to reimagine this space. We would like to give you, the citizens and students of Andhra Pradesh, the opportunity to design and bring to life your vision of urban spaces. Tell us how you can make this space more beautiful and inviting, enable citizens of all ages and backgrounds to interact with each other, and motivate them to engage in fun and purposeful activities. Be creative! Think about how art, sculpture, landscaping and greenery, seating provisions, and various physical activity can transform this space into a place citizens love and cherish.

Applicants journey

Step 1: Submission of applications

We invite school students of classes 9-12 and college students of Andhra Pradesh, individually or in teams (maximum 4 members), to conceptualize how they would like to design the identified hackathon site.

While conceptualizing the site, students should keep in mind the following guidelines:

  • The citizen should be at the centre of the concept. The concept should ideally promote health and wellbeing of citizens, and be environment-friendly and suited to the climatic conditions of Vijayawada (for info on climate, you can refer to:
  • A prototype / proof-of-concept of the idea should be relatively low-cost and implementable within 10-12 hours
  • Implementing the idea should require minimal change or disruption to existing hard infrastructure at the hackathon site (e.g., minimal digging)

Thereafter, teams should submit their idea as an essay, PowerPoint presentation, drawing/ photo, or video.

The submission guidelines are given below.

Step 2: Selection of top concepts

A selection committee comprising architects and design experts will review the applications and select the top concepts.

Step 3: Design workshop for shortlisted students

The shortlisted students/ teams will be invited to attend a design workshop, tentatively in March-end, led by an urban design expert, to translate the shortlisted concepts into tangible, implementable designs, and identify the raw materials required to execute the design(s). The raw materials will be provided to the students; they are not required to bring their own materials.

Step 4: Execution of finalized design(s)

The shortlisted students/teams will then bring their concepts to life, supported by designers, landscapers, and even citizens, o during (or prior to) the summit. The final output will be a prototype / proof-of-concept or a semi-permanent structure, and not a permanent construction. The event will be recorded for showcasing at the summit.

Step 5: Showcase of output

The final output will be unveiled and showcased during the summit, and shortlisted students/ teams will win cash prizes and be felicitated by Hon’ble Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Shri N. Chandrababu Naidu.

Key dates

Application deadline:

20th March, 2018

Extended from March 18
Announcement of winners:

23rd March, 2018

Design workshop in Vijayawada:

24th March, 2018

Final hackathon in Vijayawada:

7th and 8th April, 2018

Showcase of output at the summit:

12th April, 2018

Why should you apply

The Happy City Hackathon offers a unique opportunity for participants to:

  • Actively participate in building their capital
  • Showcase their work to the global urban community
  • Get felicitated by the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Shri Chandrababu Naidu
  • Win cash prizes!

Application guidelines

  1. Participants are required to submit an application, articulating their vision for designing the hackathon site as well as how their design could positively impact the lives of citizens. Applicants are required to address the following questions in their application:
    1. What is your concept and vision for the Punnami Ghat? (this could include overall theme, elements, and how the concept will facilitate meaningful activity and citizen interaction)
    2. Why do you think your concept will make citizens “happy”?
    3. What will it take to execute your concept (think materials, resources, and time required)?
  2. Each applicant must provide only one entry
  3. Applications once submitted, cannot be modified
  4. The last date for submission is March 20, 2018

Please note that applicants not adhering to the guidelines may be disqualified.

Apply now

Option 1: Apply online

Submit your concept in the form an essay (max 400 words) OR PowerPoint presentation (max 5 slides). If you like, you may supplement your application with a drawing or photo (less than 2 MB).

Apply now

Option 2: Email your application

Email us your application at in the form an essay (max 400 words) OR PowerPoint presentation (max 5 slides) or short video (max 5 minutes, max 5 MB), addressing the three questions mentioned in the application guidelines. If you like, you may supplement your application with a drawing or photo (less than 2 MB).

In your email, clearly mention your full name, email ID, phone number, team members’ names (if applicable), your school/ college, and the city you belong to. The subject line of your e-mail should be as follows: [Your name_Happy City Hackathon application]. The attachment should be named as follows: [Your name_Concept name_Date]

Email us

Winners of the Happy City Hackathon Competition

  1. School level winners: M. Manikanta Karthikeya, S. Niranjan Kumar, and Charan Sahu from SML DAV Public School, Srikakulam
  2. College level winners: Nilanjan Roy, Nikhil Dinesh, and Annapurna Garimella from School of Planning and Architecture, Vijayawada

Students and citizens from Andhra Pradesh are invited for the final days of the Hackathon, 7 and 8 April to witness the transformation of the Punnami Ghat in Vijayawada. The final site will be unveiled on 8 April and the competition winners will be felicitated by Hon’ble Chief Minister on 12 April, during the Happy Cities Summit.


Andhra Pradesh, the eight largest state in India, is endowed with rich natural resources & mineral wealth and boasts of the second longest coastline in the country. With visionary political leadership, strong government mandate and proactive administration, the State is poised to capitalize on its business friendly policies and robust physical, social and industrial infrastructure. Andhra Pradesh is poised to be among India’s three best states by 2022 and a developed state by 2029.

The Government of Andhra Pradesh has accorded top priority to industrial and infrastructure growth and intends to position the State as the most preferred destination for investors by providing favourable business climate, excellent infrastructure, good law and order and cordial industrial relations. Andhra Pradesh has already made an impact through its investor-friendly initiatives by being ranked as the 2nd best state in the country on Ease of Doing Business as per a report by World Bank. The State has put in place a Single Desk Portal to provide all clearances/approvals within 21 working days to set up an industry in the state.

The Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority is an urban planning agency of the capital of Andhra Pradesh, Amaravati. Amaravati is envisioned to be 'India’s happiest city’ - an inclusive people’s capital which is economically vibrant and sustaining, equipped with world class social and physical infrastructure to create unparalleled opportunities. It will meet the world class standards of livability, inclusive growth, economic opportunities and environmental sustainability. It would be the first purpose built city in the World with Urban Design derived from the ‘Happy City Principles’.

Amaravati would be the most green-and-blue city in the country with over 30% area dedicated for water and landscape features designed to give the utmost livable ambience to its residents. It is also aspired to be the first city with Navigable canals for intra-city commute (light public and tourist transit). With a design population of about 3.5Mn by year 2050 and a projected resident family population of about 0.9Mn through creation of 1.5Mn jobs. APCRDA has adopted some of the world’s best urban planning practices for Amaravati and fused them with local needs.

Andhra Pradesh Innovation Society (APIS) is a Government of Andhra Pradesh body, set up with a mandate, inter alia, to create policies to promote innovation agenda in the state, and promote and encourage the establishment of innovation and entrepreneurship culture in the state. APIS is working towards creating a world class infrastructure in the state of Andhra Pradesh to encourage and support more innovation driven entrepreneurial activities. Simultaneously, APIS is trying to create an enabling ecosystem in the state to attract startups from across the world to come and realize their dreams, through its international engagements.

APIS along with its partners has also initiated several novel initiatives in order to help transform the classrooms and laboratories of schools and colleges into incubators and facilitators of innovation and entrepreneurial endeavors of global repute.

Dalberg Advisors is an advisory firm dedicated to social and economic development of the global poor, with the mission of bringing the best of private sector strategy to address the most pressing global development challenges. Dalberg has 17 offices across the globe and the clients span the public, private and philanthropic sectors.

Through a dedicated ‘Cities’ practice area, Dalberg works with diverse urban actors to help cities define purposeful goals and plans, identify challenges, collaborate through global networks and partnerships, experiment with potential solutions, and adapt to change continuously. In the past, we have supported inclusive and resilient urban growth through strategy, design, big data analysis and evaluation, and partnership-building.