The Cambridge Board of Survey has determined its recommendation as to the lines of the proposed boulevard from Quincy Square to the Parkway to be formed by the widening and extension of DeWolf street. The question came before the citizens of Cambridge early in 1902 as the result of a petition, signed by President Eliot, Charles F. Adams and others, asking for "a dignified approach to Harvard College." The Board of Survey held several hearings on the matter, at which both parties to the plan were heard.
The lines of the proposed boulevard as determined by the Board are changed considerably from those asked for in the petition. The present plan calls for an eighty foot street, curving slightly from Quincy Square almost to the Parkway. The city engineer prepared the accepted plan with a view to disturbing as few houses as possible. In this he was remarkably successful, and the lines as now designated should meet with more favor than the former ones, which were drawn through nearly every building on both sides of the street.
If the city government decides to construct the boulevard, Quincy Hall and the two adjoining buildings will have to be torn down. The property on the easterly side of the street will be most seriously affected, the St. Paul's Catholic School Association being one of the heaviest losers Westmorley Court will not be disturbed, as there is a slight outward curve in the street at this point.
A number of graduates and friends of the University have pledged a sum of money for the carrying out of the project, and it is expected that this amount will be considerably increased now that definite steps, have been taken in the matter.
The action of the Board of Survey places an encumbrance upon the property affected, for the bounds of the highway are absolutely determined by this official decision of the Board. No improvements can be made upon the property along the street which will subject the city to any additional liabilities over those which would be incurred if the city condemned the land at once.
The matter is now to be decided by the City Council and will probably be brought up in the near future. The acceptance or rejection of the plan will probably be materially affected by the amount of money which is subscribed by graduates and friends of Harvard, as the City Council is unwilling to increase the taxes, as might be necessary if the city were to raise money for the condemnation of the buildings on the proposed parkway route.