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It's Christmas time and City Councillor Alfred E. Vellucci wants Harvard to give Cambridge a present. Something big, he suggests. Something like a chunk of Harvard Yard.
But Vellucci believes that half the fun of Christmas is giving, and so in return for part of the Yard, he proposes that the City present the University with a chunk of the Bennett St. MBTA yards.
Vellucci's proposal is not new he has made it at least three times this year, but his repetition of it Monday took on new significance because the East Cambridge councillor was acting mayor. Mayor Edward A. Crane '35 was unable to attend Monday's session.
"Each time someone talks about slicing up Harvard Yard, everybody makes with the joke." Vellucci told his fellow councillors. "But it's no joke," he maintained. "It's the only sensible way of handling the Harvard Square traffic problem."
Vellucci suggests that the surgery will take care of all congestion in the Square.
To acquire a chunk of the Yard--a chunk that would probably include Straus and Lehman Halls and possibly the office of President Pusey in Massachusetts Hall--Vellucci suggests use of urban renewal laws.
When Councillor Bernard Goldberg explained that the Harvard buildings would have to be declared "blighted" before they could be condemned. Vellucci quickly pointed out that there would be no problem. "They're all three hundred years old," he calmly retorted.
And Vellucci doesn't believe in beating around the bush. "The time has arrived to bring Dr. Pusey in here," he told his fellow councillors," 'cause held the boss over there."
But most of Vellucci's comrades have heard his proposal before and undoubtedly expect to hear it again. They calmly put the whole matter "on the table" and there it will probably rest.
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