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Last Updated: Monday, 18 April, 2005, 08:46 GMT 09:46 UK
Mogul gives up beach access fight
David Geffen
David Geffen is a co-founder of the DreamWorks studio
Hollywood music mogul David Geffen has given up a three-year legal battle to prevent public access to a stretch of beach in front of his Malibu estate.

Keys to gates blocking the pathway were given to non-profit group Access for All on Thursday. The California Coastal Commission approved the deal on Friday.

Geffen also agreed to pay $300,000 (158,231) in legal fees and costs.

The dispute gained national attention when it was lampooned by cartoonist Garry Trudeau in his Doonesbury strip.

Geffen's action fulfils a promise he made in 1983 guaranteeing access to the beach from the nearby Pacific Coast Highway in exchange for permits allowing him to expand his seafront estate.

Representatives for the DreamWorks studio co-founder were not available for comment.

It's a public beach, and the public has an absolute right to be there
Steve Hoye, Access for All
A Coastal Commission spokeswoman said the settlement cleared the way for the first new beach access path along the 26-mile Malibu coast in 10 years.

Public enjoyment of beaches is a contentious issue in California, where surfing is a way of life and coastal access a matter of state policy.

"This conflict is really about privilege," said Steve Hoye, co-founder of the Access for All group.

"It's a public beach, and the public has an absolute right to be there."

Mr Hoye said the walkway would be open to the public as soon as his group could post signs, install rubbish bins and ensure the path was safe.


SEE ALSO:
Streisand sues over mansion photos
02 Jun 03 |  Entertainment
DreamWorks flotation makes $812m
28 Oct 04 |  Business
Dreamworks trio in US wealth list
23 Sep 04 |  Entertainment


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