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Miami-Dade Transit and O, Miami team up to connect County with wheels and words through a unique Metrobus design

MIAMI (March 27, 2017)

Miami is a city that inspires all sorts of creative expression, including poetry. For students at Poinciana Park and Orchard Villa Elementary schools, their creative expression is being shared across Miami-Dade County in an unconventional way.

On Monday, the Department of Transportation and Public Works (DTPW) along with the O, Miami Poetry Festival, unveiled a specially-wrapped Metrobus that features original poems written by third and fourth grade students.

The bus design has been in circulation since February and will continue to circulate on different routes around the County.

“Giving our children the opportunity to share their poems with the rest of the community is a powerful thing,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez. “Seeing their original works ride around Miami-Dade will give these talented students an even greater sense of pride and connection to our world-class community."

The students were directed to write poems that addressed the themes of migration, transit, or place. Out of all the submissions, 11 were selected to be included in the bus design. The project was part of a nationwide initiative by U.S. poetry organizations to grow readership called “Because We Come From Everywhere.” O, Miami is the only Florida member of the Poetry Coalition, a group of twenty-two of the nation’s leading poetry non-profits.

The poems were written as part of O, Miami Sunroom workshops, a semester-long poetry course sponsored by Knight Foundation, The Children’s Trust, Miami-Dade County, and the State of Florida.

“Not only will this bus visually brighten the days of our riders,” said Alice N. Bravo, P.E., DTPW director, “but we hope it will also act as a bit of inspiration and encourage more people to give transit a try. Every new rider represents one less car on the road and contributes to improved mobility in Miami-Dade County.”

Inspired by the look of a traditional school bus, the “Wheels and Words” Metrobus design is yellow with black text. In large letters, “O, Miami” is at the center. Examples of the featured poems are: “I’m from where there are a lot of cars. / I’m from where Spanish music plays -- / horns and drums and guitars.” by Iriam Reyes; and “All around me are the places where I like to go,” by Samantha Richardson.

“The poems these students write are so good that we’re constantly looking for ways to share them with the world at large,” said O, Miami founder and executive director P. Scott Cunningham. “We were thrilled when the Department of Transportation and Public Works made the bus available to us and gave the kids this opportunity.”

Download the free Miami-Dade Transit Tracker app by visiting www.miamidade.gov/transit/transit-tracker-app and start planning for your next trip today. Also available from DTPW is the EASY Pay app – turn your smartphone into a mobile ticket and just scan to ride. Visit www.miamidade.gov/transit/easy-pay for more information. Don’t forget, riders can now also pay for parking via their mobile devices with the PayByPhone cashless app.

We’re with you every stop of the way.