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Community Digest

Long Beach : Gardeners Get Extension for Vacating CSULB Plot

March 04, 1993

The organic gardeners at Cal State Long Beach, previously ordered to vacate their plots Sunday to make way for a parking lot, were granted a two-week reprieve by the university, which owns the land.

The extension was granted to give the urban farmers time to pick ripe vegetables and remove fencing and tools, university officials said. They also said the extension does not change their plans to build a parking lot or their order to the gardeners to leave the site.

Still, Mary Ellen Zinser, who heads the Committee to Save the Organic Gardens, said she is optimistic because the delay could mean that their concerns about the land are being considered by the university.

Efforts to stop the construction of the temporary parking lot became heated last month when American Indian leaders joined the gardeners' protest, saying the land has significant historical and archeological value.

The garden is part of a 23-acre strip of vacant university land that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Archeological digs have uncovered Native American remains and evidence that an ancient Indian village once existed on the campus.

Last month, university officials said they would undertake another dig at the site as soon as the gardeners vacate the land. The dig will be monitored by American Indian leaders.

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