Minibus buzzes around `city’

  Broward County Transit, or BCT, and Wannado City recently announced a joint venture that has put a mini BCT transit bus on the streets of the indoor theme park. The bus will shuttle visitors around the city, give them tours and educate them about mass transit. Here, the bus makes its way through the streets of Wannado City.
Broward County Transit, or BCT, and Wannado City recently announced a joint venture that has put a mini BCT transit bus on the streets of the indoor theme park. The bus will shuttle visitors around the city, give them tours and educate them about mass transit. Here, the bus makes its way through the streets of Wannado City.

JULIE LANDRY LAVIOLETTE / FOR THE MIAMI HERALD

Wannado City, the child-size ‘city’ at Sawgrass Mills, has created another attraction — a Broward Transit minibus exhibit.

BY JULIE LANDRY LAVIOLETTE

Special to The Miami Herald

Doris Williams has taken her grandson, Dasiem, 11, to Wannado City in Sunrise since the indoor theme park for kids opened in 2004.

On Jan. 16, she helped open a new attraction inspired by those visits.

Williams, a Broward County Transit employee, was intrigued with the child-size city that helps youngsters explore real jobs. And it gave her an idea.

‘When I saw the fire engines and ambulances riding around, I said, `BCT should be in there,’ ” Williams said.

Broward County Transit and Wannado City recently announced a joint venture that has put a mini BCT transit bus on the streets of the indoor theme park. The minibus will shuttle visitors around, give them tours and educate them about mass transit.

The 13-month sponsorship was paid for with a $50,000 grant from the Florida Department of Transportation, Williams said.

”The objective of the Broward County Commission and Broward County Transit is to attract young riders,” said Williams, a BCT special projects coordinator. “We already have kids who ride the bus to school and use it on weekends to go to parks and cultural activities. We would like to see that increase because they are our future riders.”

The joint venture also will expose more parents to the transit system and help educate kids about career possibilities.

”Most kids just see the bus riders,” Williams said. “On a video, kids will be able to see mechanics, the designer of promotional pieces, and the coach attendants who provide upkeep for the buses.”

The bus will offer three tours, said Bruce Glorsky, sales and marketing director for Wannado City. An Action and Adventure tour will pass the rock climbing wall and paleontology and archaeology exhibits. The Fame and Fortune tour will swing by the jeweler, acting studio and theater. A City and Industry tour will take visitors by the courthouse and police and fire departments.

There are three bus stops and one main bus terminal, each with a video component that will offer a behind-the-scenes look at mass transit, Glorsky said.

A video system on the bus will welcome visitors, tell them a little about BCT, then provide the audio for the tour, he said.

The bus, which belongs to Wannado City and was previously used for a dinosaur tour, has been redesigned as a BCT Breeze bus, Glorsky said.

”Through time, we have flexed a lot of things at the park into something else,” he said. “It’s a way to keep our park fresh.”

Wannado City is offering $4 off admission to BCT bus pass holders.

Source : http://www.miamiherald.com

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