Two merchants yesterday expressed extreme doubt that construction of the recommended University medical center on Mt. Auburn St., between Dunster and Holyoke Sts.., would affect their business. The proposed building would rise on a parking lot and on the sites of five stores.
James D. Cronin, of Cronin's Restaurant, and Fred Parziale, of Arthur Parker's, predicted that the University would not tear down the present commercial buildings, but would build beside and over them.
"If they build, they'll probably build around us," Cronin said. He evidently holds a long-term lease with the University, and is planning extensive repairs to his establishment.
"I'm only hoping that Harvard would provide outlets for us," Parziale noted. He believed that if the present buildings were razed, street floor locations in the new structure would be provided.
Such a proposal might well be feasible. Although he had heard of no formal construction plan, Charles C. Pyne, administrative assistant to the vice-president, suggested that because of street noise, infirmary rooms included in the proposed structure would need to be on upper floors, anyway.
Peter Zirakian and Charles E. Haskin, co-owners of the Crimson Men's Shop, expressed doubt that the structure would ever go up. "They even wanted to build Littauer here until they found out it was too heavy a building," Zirakian recalled.
The clothing store recently expanded, adding a Mt. Auburn entrance to its Dunster St. location.
Tenants-at-will rather than lessees are Cahaly Bros. Proprietors Michael and Ralph Cahaly said yesterday that "we haven't any plans until we are officially notified."