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Uprooting Exposition Park's Rose Garden

November 15, 1986

I was saddened to learn of the planned destruction/disruption of the marvelous Exposition Park rose garden.

As a child, I enjoyed walking around the raised edge of the fountain and racing through the numerous pathways amongst the thousands of bushes. As a student at USC, I looked forward to short visits to the garden, which serves as an island of peace, beauty and tranquility in a sea of noise, pollution and tension.

As an avid sports fan, I can well appreciate the benefits that will be brought with vastly increased parking for the Coliseum, Sports Arena, and museums. However, I must agree with those who question the choice of this site for parking. There is a large grassy area and road directly east and northeast of the Coliseum that could be used for this purpose, with extremely easy access from Figueroa Street.

As USC architecture dean Robert Harris points out in your article, the spatiality brought about by the sunken nature of the fountain will be permanently destroyed by the plan to raise the level eight feet.

This garden, in the same way as other well-known gardens such as the Buchardt in Canada, and the Japanese Garden at the Huntington in San Marino, owes much of its charm to this spatiality created by having it on a totally different level than the surrounding terrain. To destroy this is unnecessary and a shame, another destructive monument to the "God of Progress."

GREGORY A. PEARSON

Santa Monica

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