Youngstown Partners with WRTA on Bus to Promote the City

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – A bus featuring a specially designed full wrap will promote the city through a yearlong campaign.

City officials and representatives of Western Reserve Transit Authority and its transit advertising partner, Adsposure, unveiled the new CommYOUnity Spotlight bus during a Tuesday morning news conference at WRTA’s bus garage.

“My team has been working with how to get better at what we’re doing. We’ve got to start telling our story better in Youngstown,” Mayor Jamael Tito Brown said. “This is just another opportunity for us again to tell our story.”

The mayor said riding the bus was “a big piece” of his life while growing up, and he jokingly said he was looking forward to riding the bus to Southern Park Mall to get outfits at the Merry-Go-Round, a long-defunct clothing chain.

The bus, which will be used on several WRTA routes, “represents a great opportunity for us to showcase all of the great things happening in the city,” said Nikki Posterli, Brown’s chief of staff and director of the city’s department of community planning and economic development. 

“We just want to let everybody know that we are invested in our businesses downtown and throughout our neighborhoods,” said Councilman Julius Oliver, 1st Ward.

“This is a chance to showcase what we can do” to promote the city, said Dean Harris, WRTA’s executive director.

The full-bus wrap, which features graphics showcasing city-related imagery and a QR code to download the YO! rewards app, also has interchangeable planes that will be changed monthly or quarterly, said James Valdez, regional sales manager for Adsposure.  

The panels will be used to promote specific businesses, accomplishments and city events, Brown said.  

The rear panel also features a gun safety message. Police Chief Carl Davis lamented that during his three years as chief, three or four children were shot while playing with firearms.

“We want to get the message out to the children that if you see a gun, run and tell an adult,” Davis said.

Though the campaign is using only one bus, officials didn’t rule out adding buses to the program.

“We may pick up some sponsors for other buses for the city,” Brown said. “This is a great start.”

Pictured at top: Youngstown Mayor Jamael Tito Brown, foreground, James Valdez, regional sales manager for Adsposure, and Councilman Julius Oliver stand in front of the CommYOUnity Spotlight bus.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.