LET­TERS TO THE ED­I­TOR

Build this some­where else, please

The Washington Post Sunday - - SUNDAY OPINION -

The Chi­nese govern­ment would like to do­nate a spe­cial Chi­nese gar­den com­plex to the Na­tional Ar­bore­tum in North­east Washington, as the April 28 Style ar­ti­cle “From Bei­jing to D.C.: $100 mil­lion in seed money” noted. It is a gen­er­ous and at­trac­tive of­fer. But the ar­bore­tum is not the place for a 12-acre com­plex of two dozen struc­tures, path­ways and other con­struc­tions, no mat­ter how lovely or ed­u­ca­tional about Chi­nese his­tory. The donors should please build it else­where.

The ar­bore­tum is a rem­nant oa­sis in the District de­voted to plants, open space and a con­sid­er­able amount of nat­u­ral sur­round­ings, in­clud­ing river­bank, streams, for­est, mead­ows, ponds, hills and even nest­ing ea­gles. Smaller themed gar­dens are sit­u­ated in suit­able spots. A large theme-park type of cul­tural pro­mo­tion is not suited to this rare lo­ca­tion.

Stephen Price, Takoma Park

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