Months Late, Graduate Students Move Into 29 Garden St.

Rachel L. Weiss

Harvard Law School student FILIP WEJMAN, moves in to the newly-renovated housing after living in the Marriot since September.

As Thanksgiving approaches, some graduate students who have coped with complimentary breakfasts and a heated pool for the last three months finally have a place they can call their own.

University spokesperson Lauren Marshall said a second wave of graduate students moved into 29 Garden Street this weekend, even as renovations to the new graduate student housing complex continue.

Students planning to move into the former hotel and Harvard University Police Department headquarters for the fall term arrived in September to find construction behind schedule and their apartments unfinished.

Harvard Real Estate Services housed the displaced graduate students at the Marriott Residence Inn in Kendall Square and the Marriott Boston Cambridge Hotel. Some students moved into the building in early November, but many units were still not livable until this weekend.

Marshall said unanticipated structural difficulties had a “mushroom effect” and delayed other phases of the project.

Only five apartments remain to be finished, with the completion of the project planned for December.

First-year law school student Angela M. Yingling said that while she found moving mid-semester and the daily commute inconvenient, she enjoyed living rent-free for three months.

“When they told us we were going to be moving even later than we planned, I was a bit annoyed but I got over it pretty quickly,” she said.

Harvard law student Filip Wejman said he preferred his new residence to the Marriott.

“The hotel—maybe there was a bit more space, a gym, free food and a pool—but I feel better with my own place,” he said.

Even though construction is still underway, first-year design school student Kirby Hoyt said the noise hasn’t bothered him.

“The proximity of the campus is the biggest reason why I wanted to move here and get here as soon as possible,” said Hoyt. “It’s a ten-minute walk from here to the Graduate School of Design, whereas it was two T-stops away from the Marriott.”

First-year law school student Erin Abrams said she and her roommate were initially annoyed with the delay and planned to find an apartment independently. But she said the University quickly found a place for them in Botanic Gardens, another affiliated housing complex at 28 Fernald Drive.

“I am very satisfied with my current living situation, and am glad that I could stay in affiliated housing, even if it was not at 29 Garden Street,” she said. “I would say that I have had a positive, if unconventional experience with Harvard affiliated housing so far.”