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Mayor Unveils RNC Transports

Mayor Bob Buckhorn was on hand this morning to unveil the eco-friendly transport vehicles that will help delegates get around downtown during the RNC.

A device known as a "people powered bus" was unveiled in downtown Tampa on Tuesday by manufacturer Humana and Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn.

The nine seat "buses" are powered by the pedaling of a driver who will transport up to eight passengers. Twenty buses will be used at both the Republican National Convention and Democratic National Convention as an alternate mode of transportation as delegates and media people deal with the chaos and lockdown atmosphere surrounding the conventions.

The buses will make stops at convention hot spots and multiple Freewheelin stations that will offer free biometric health screenings, fresh fruit and cold water to riders.

The company says that in addition to helping visitors skirt traffic jams, the super-surreys will "track [passengers'] calories burned, carbon offset and miles ridden."

"The unveiling of our new buses was great to see with the Mayor and the RNC co-chair on hand to try them out for the first time," Humana's Media Relations manager Mitch Lubitz said. "The trial ride outside the convention center went really well and we're looking forward to serving people at this convention. It's pretty unusual still to see something like this, but we got some experience with the two conventions four years ago when we did a bicycle sharing program. We had stations around town where people could pick up free bikes and helmets and it was a huge success. This time, we think this version will be very popular because people will be covered by a canopy and can socialize while they get around."

To learn more about the buses, visit www.freewheelin2012.com

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