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Mass transit good for your health, panel told

The Baltimore Sun

Pushing for mass transit improvements instead of new roads to accommodate the looming expansion at Aberdeen Proving Ground would mitigate air pollution from increased traffic, Harford County's health officer said yesterday during a meeting with a county transportation group.

"Planners and builders are naive about the impact," Dr. Andrew Bernstein said to members of the Harford County Transportation Management Association, a quasi-governmental group that advocates efficient transportation solutions.

"Everything we build has an impact on air quality," Bernstein said. "There is a relationship between what, where and how we build and our health."

Association members are urging the county to consider mass transit as an alternative to road projects to meet the demands of the nationwide military base realignment known as BRAC.

"Mass transit is expensive, but it will mean cleaner air for generations to come," said Judy Rose, an association member and Joppa resident, who wants planners to consider monorails on the county's major highways.

More vehicles - as many as 60,000 when the full effect of BRAC is felt in about four years - will mean more air pollution.

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