Saturday, April 20, 2002

Sierra Club rallies for Little Miami

By Susan Vela,
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MARIEMONT — Local Sierra Club members will rally today to honor Earth Day and to protest a plan they believe will endanger the Little Miami River.

        At least 60 members were expected to meet in Mariemont's Dogwood Park this morning to protest a proposed 10-mile highway that would connect Interstate 71 at Red Bank Road and Interstate 275 near Eastgate Mall. Plans for the $77 million highway include a four- to six-lane bridge across the river near Fairfax.

        “So many people care deeply about the Little Miami. They're going to be out there to voice that it needs protection and (to urge) Gov. Taft to stop this misguided and ill-thought-out project,” said Glen Brand, spokesman for the Sierra Club in Cincinnati. “It's a great opportunity for folks to make a difference in protecting the most special natural resource in Ohio.”

        At 10 a.m., the rally kicks off with speeches by Stanley Hedeen of Xavier University and Michael Miller of the University of Cincinnati. In October, the biology professors released a study sponsored by the Sierra Club that said the highway would irreversibly increase traffic congestion, urban sprawl and create water, air and noise pollution.

        Local Sierra Club leaders and Betty Rhoades of Little Miami Inc. also will speak. Afterward, they plan to knock on neighborhood doors and pass out postcards addressed to Gov. Taft.


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