Cherington Plans Peterborough Shift
Most Administration officials are concerned about how the College will manage to expand over the flats of Cowperthwaite Street and Brattle Square. One University professor, however--in a strictly amateur capacity--is working on a plan that would pick up Harvard like Lilliputia and put it down on a wooded hillside 50 miles from Cambridge.
Charles R. Cherington '35, professor of Government, wants the College to move to Peterborough, N.H. But to forestall the Old Grad with a vested interest in President Eliot's elms and the brick sidewalks on Garden St., he doesn't want the move to take place for the next 100 years.
"It's a matter of simple necessity," Cherington says. "It is becoming increasingly difficult for the University to continue in Cambridge. Traffic problems and lack of desirable land for expansion will only worsen over the years," he said.
Cherington, an expert in transportation and government regulation of industry, said that a rural area with adequate means of access would be the best location for the academic community of the future. Peterborough, he said, "has a lot of fine, vacant land. And it will be closer to New York by automobile," he said, "particularly when they get this new Buck Rodgers highway in."
Every institution, he continued, must plan to replace its buildings at least every century. New construction, therefore, should be placed at a site more suited to the future integrity of the University than Cambridge.
Cherington foresaw possible trouble in moving the University's charter out of Massachusetts. "In that case we could go out to the Worcester hills--west of the Connecticut River--where there is also a lot of good vacant land."
"It will take a lot of careful coordination to make the change smoothly without severing part of our academic life," he said, "but it can be done."
Peterborough--or Peterboro if you live there--has a population of 1,506. Located on a spur line of the Boston & Maine Railroad, it is the site of the famous 600-acre arts center in honor of composer Edward MacDowell.