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At least some small consolation to the several hundred members of the bulky Class of 1940 who tried unsuccessfully to squeeze their way into a House system already uncomfortably crowded except in the high-price level, is the announcement that an old frame building on Riverview Avenue will be added to Winthrop House. While not a very pretty looking dwelling at present, industrious yeomen from the Maintenance Department will attack it this summer, spruce up the interior, put in some plumbing, and spray onto the walls that etherial something which makes a House different from any other dwelling. Then, in the fall, this little addition will welcome its small brood of a dozen or so, square its shoulders, and prepare itself for the mighty task of filling the gap until that distant day when a real solution materializes.
No aspersions should be cast on this addition to Winthrop because of its appearance. The Kirkland House library is a charming example of how refreshing a frame building can be in this brick and stone University. But nevertheless, for Harvard to be forced to open a tiny unit like the Riverside hall, which will indeed barely scrape the surface of a really important habitation problem, is for the University to admit just how difficult that problem has become. Rearrangement of suites here and there has made available in all accomodations for about fifteen more men in the Houses--a few squirm through the bars while several hundred fret unhappily between Little and Claverly.
The problem is certainly not solved by the Riverside addition, although the University is to be commended for bringing into use all available facilities. For this effort, credit is due, but not credit for victory. For those outside there is no victory yet, not even the stop-gap consolation of House library, dining hall, and common room privileges. For them remains only the vague, unsatisfying hope for better treatment in the future.
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