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Published August 1st, 2012
Lafayette Students' Artwork among Caldecott Tunnel's Winning Designs
Cathy Dausman
Springhill student Chaya Tong holds her winning Caldecott Tunnel Fourth Bore Medallion design Photo Cathy Dausman

Two Lafayette students - Chaya Tong, age 8, of Springhill Elementary School, and Daniell McCann, age 16, of Acalanes High School - will have their artwork permanently displayed over the entrance to the new Caldecott Tunnel as winners in the Caldecott Fourth Bore Project Medallion Design competition.
The competition, which was open to students in Alameda and Contra Costa counties, announced six winners July 23. Tong and McCann joined Pleasant Hill Middle School's Penelope Watson as winners in Contra Costa County. The three Alameda County winners were 8-year-old Nuala Gorshow and 11-year-old Aoife Gorshow of Thornhill Elementary School, and Ellina Bartholomew Couts, age 10, of Frank Otis Elementary School.
Six hexagonal three-foot medallions, three on each side of the tunnel, will be installed. More than 300 elementary, middle, and high school students from throughout Alameda and Contra Costa counties submitted their design proposals. Three judges from each county evaluated entries from their respective counties.
An online survey eliminated all but 70 entries; judges then chose the top six. The Art Deco theme was chosen by an online public survey earlier this year. Contra Costa Transportation Authority Chair, and Lafayette City Council member, Don Tatzin said winning entries also reflected similar 'subthemes' of Mount Diablo, nature and the sun.
Tong, who recently completed third grade in Mrs. Vann's class, is already an old pro at art competitions. Three winning bookmark designs for Lafayette Library and Learning Center decorate her family's wall. "I like to draw," she said. Tong and her mother Moona Nandi researched Art Deco before submitting her simple black and white design of rolling green hills, bright sun, and plants. She plans to "make all my friends drive through 'my tunnel'" when her medallion is installed.
Caldecott Fourth Bore Public Information Officer Ivy Morrison said an awards ceremony is scheduled for the fall at Contra Costa Transportation Authority.
The Caldecott Fourth Bore construction is a partnership between the Federal Highway Administration, the California Department of Transportation, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, the Contra Costa Transportation Authority, and the Alameda County Transportation Commission. The new tunnel is scheduled to open late 2013. To view the winning designs, visit www.caldecott-tunnel.org/medallion.


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