Masters Present Diverse Views On Size, Style for Tenth House
450 Students Seen as Maximum
Although most of the Masters favor the construction of a tenth House, they hold varying views of the ideal form for it. Pointing to the general need for further deconversion, several consider an additional House not merely desirable but necessary. They differ, however, as to size and most suitable architectural style.
"A Master tends to feel he's the proprietor of a sardine-packing establishment," when House size increases much beyond 400, according to John H, Finley, Jr, '25, Master of Eliot House, John M. Bullitt '43, Master of Quincy House, Placed the ideal number somewhere around 250. Noting that this also would be economically unfeasible, he suggested 350 as a reasonable objective.
Since Masters and Senior Tutors cannot deal effectively with more than 450 students, John J. Conway, Master of Leverett House, feels that this figure represents an "absolute maximum." In contrast to Finley and Bullitt, he considers the maximum figure to be the ideal number. Viewing the Yale Colleges as "almost too intimate," he declared that only a large House can provide the necessary privacy for ungregarious students.
No style of architecture, however revolutionary, could be worse than MTA yards, Finley said, but he expressed preference for "a cross between Eliot and Quincy." He objected to the trend toward skyscrapers on the grounds that exceptionally tall buildings inevitably create an impersonal atmosphere.
In addition, Finley protested the effect of such building as Leverett Towers on the Harvard skyline. He noted, however, that completion of the medical center and of a tall tenth House next to Eliot might possibly counterbalance the Towers.
Defending the arrangement at Leverett Towers, Conway emphasized its great flexibility in providing rooms for groups from 2 to 14. The "virtually unanimous" satisfaction of the students living in the Towers furnishes the best answer to its critics, he commented.
If the new House turns out as well as Quincy is will be an excellent addition to the system, Charles H. Taylor, Master of Kirkland House, stated. He particularly recommended the Quincy duplex arrangement with individual study-bedrooms and living rooms on alternate floors.
Bullitt expressed preference for a building that "is modern and yet fits inconspicuously into the surrounding environment." He recommended a structure similar to Quincy, but with elevators which run somewhat more frequently.