Popemobile Arrives in US, Will It Go Down Broad Street? | NBC 10 Philadelphia
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Popemobile Arrives in US, Will It Go Down Broad Street?

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Officials are trying a new approach, with signs they have been handing out, to get more city visitors and residents more excited about the Pope’s visit. NBC10’s Drew Smith reports on how one business is getting excited for the visit, along with the new name for the secured areas during the visit. (Published Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015)

    Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter has "no idea" where the Popemobile is and isn't saying if Pope Francis will use it for an impromptu parade down Broad Street.

    "I have no idea where the Popemobile is," said Nutter while answering reporters' questions Wednesday afternoon.

    A specially-outfitted Jeep Wrangler "Popemobile" – a vehicle in which the Pope can stand and wave to crowds – arrived in the United States recently and was already turned over to the Secret Service, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, the Italian-American maker of Jeep, told the AP.

    "I was not aware that the Popemobile had arrived, I did not get that memo," said Nutter to laughs in the crowd. "The one thing I can assure is that it’s not here."

    The American-version of the Popemobile is similar to the one used during Pope Francis' recent South American visit.

    The white Wrangler used by the Holy See in Ecuador had a glass-front roof with open sides, allowing the popular Pontiff to get closer to his flock than popemobiles of the past, which were typically closed, bulletproof affairs.

    Nutter got an up-close look at one of the more traditional (and opulent) popemobiles during his June trip to Rome. He even got to take a photo in front of the impressive vehicle, he said.

    "It's a very nice Mercedes -- all white, It think, with a little red trim."

    Will a version of the Popemobile make its way down Broad Street Mummer's style?

    "I am not aware, at the moment, of any particular plan in regard to the movement of the vehicle and His Holiness," said Nutter. "Obviously, that's pretty significant security-related information."

    Nutter compared releasing info about the Pontiff's planned movements to releasing President Barack Obama's movements ahead of a visit, since both are heads of state.