Category Archives: Business

Harvard Expansion Approved

The Boston Redevelopment Authority approved Harvard’s 10 year development plan in Allston, giving the green light to several new building projects and two major renovations.

The plan covers three new buildings and one renovation at Harvard Business school, a hotel and conference center on Western Ave., renovations to the Soldiers Field Park graduate student housing, some renovations to Harvard Stadium, and a new home for Harvard basketball.

The other two projects call for renovating two other student housing buildings on the business school campus.

Several board members of the Boston Redevelopment Authority, believes the plan, “provides a framework for future development in Allston that will support key academic needs and further knit together campus and community,” they released the statement not to long after the approval.

“The plan will expand the University’s academic presence, continue the activation of Barry’s Corner, enhance the public realm, strengthen pedestrian connections, improve circulation, and create new green space and gathering places for the University and the community,” the B.R.A stated. “In addition, the plan includes a long-term vision to guide future campus and community planning in Allston.”

Harvard, city officials in Allston/Brighton, and residents are also working to finish up a 10-year community benefits package to go along with the university’s master plan for development. However, concerns remain about the plan as well as about Harvard’s plans for Allston for the future.

Allston resident Henry Christensen said, “the plan was approved by the Boston Redevelopment Authority without Harvard taking into account the residents feelings” about how the large development plan will impact traffic, parking, and public spaces.
Harvard officials believe this is the best move for the University, including Harvard President Drew Faust, “I truly believe that no institution of higher education has a more exciting opportunity for innovative growth, in an intellectual and entrepreneurial environment as dynamic as we have in Boston and Cambridge,” Faust wrote in a letter to residents.

Newly elected mayor, Martin J. Walsh said he would make major changes to the Boston Redevelopment Authority’s structure after the public outcry.
Residents in Boston have made it apparent that the B.R.A. has tried to move too quickly to approve projects and that the authority does not adequately factor residents’ feedback when making decisions.

Harvard began pushing for an expansion in Allston in the late 1980s, and it now owns 359 acres in Allston. In late 2003, Harvard envisioned a massive 250-acre campus in Allston that included academic space, student housing, entertainment facilities, and the transformation of Barry’s Corner to replicate Harvard Square.

Harvard Expansion in Allston

As Harvard University’s expansion into Allston continues,

tensions remain high between representatives of the school and local residents. good

The expansion is planned to continue through the next 10 years, and has left residents

unsure how the projects will affect their community.

The Harvard Allston Task force community, add a description of task force here met

Wednesday night and expressed frustration and concern over the University’s new

Institutional Master Plan Notification Form. They called for Harvard to honor existing

commitments to community projects before breaking ground on its proposed project at

Barry’s Corner, a mixed-use, residential-and-retail complex located at the intersection of

North Harvard Street and Western Avenue in the North Allston neighborhood.

Add a quote here from the meeting, or from an interview you obtained after the meeting.

Harvard started a free shuttle service between its Cambridge and Allston campuses

to fulfill the needs of the Harvard-Allston Task Force. Give us a little detail about the

shuttle service here. From what streets, where will it drop off? Western Avenue? How

much will it cost? Etc. Members of the task force said it was a small achievement in

expansion negotiations that have gone in favor of the university for years.

The shuttle service is a project the university plans to take on in the Allston/Brighton

area over the upcoming 10 years. The projects will encompass more than 300 acres,

according to the Institutional Master Plan submitted to the Boston Redevelopment

Harvard already has a presence in Lower Allston. Its business school and athletic

complex take up a large part of the property north of Western Avenue and south of

the Charles River. There are also facilities on Travis Street. Harvard is expected to

start construction? on most residential neighborhoods starting in late 2013 and early

2014. They also plan to renovate the Harvard Stadium and Baker Hall, according to the

Because most of the outlined projects are not yet underway, several residents

are unsure how the future developments would affect the community. Many said the

shuttle service was useless because the routes were too limited to be practical for

residents who are not students at Harvard.