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UCLA, heirs wrangle over fate of a tranquil Japanese garden
UCLA, heirs wrangle over fate of a tranquil Japanese garden

Half a century ago, the man who built the Broadway department store chain and his wife gave to UCLA their house and the Japanese garden that spilled down the hillside below it near the Hotel Bel-Air. The UC regents, UCLA's governing body, promised to maintain the garden forever. Sounds simple enough, but for three years the university and the donors' heirs have wrangled over the fate of the garden, which experts consider to be one of the finest examples in North America of a landscaping style meant to inspire Zen-like tranquillity. Decades ago, UCLA opened the garden to visitors on a limited basis, and thousands made the necessary reservations to stroll the steep pathways. In...

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