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More than 250 Harvard faculty members have in the past week signed a statement calling for a "complete restudy" of the Inner Belt highway proposal.
The statement, drafted by Chester W. Hartman '57, assistant professor of City Planning, specifically criticizes the proposed Brookline-Elm route, and calls any new highway through Cambridge's "extremely destructive." It questions the need for the highway to be built at all, and asks that an "integrated master transportation plan" be developed for the Boston area.
Hartman said yesterday that he will collect faculty signatures to the statement until April 17, when he will purchase advertisements in the Boston newspapers carrying the statement and a complete list of its signers. He said the statement was the beginning of a much larger effort, and said that he hoped to get the newly-formed cabinet Department of Transportation to choose Cambridge for investigation as a test city.
Nearly two-thirds of the Law School faculty--56 people--have already signed the statement. Signers from other Harvard schools include:
Edward C. Banfield, Garrett Birkhoff '32, John N. D. Bush, Giles Constable '50, Elliot Forbes '40, Frank B. Freidel Jr., John K. Fairbank '29, George W. Goethals '43, Albert O. Hirschman, Samuel P. Huntington, Howard M. Jones, and George B. Kistiakowsky.
Others include: Simon S. Kuznets, Kenneth S. Lynn '45, Bernard Malamud, Juan Marichal, Frederick Merk, Barrington Moore Jr., Samuel Eliot Morison '08, Daniel P. Moynihan, Henry A. Murray '15, William W. Nash Jr. '50, David E. Owen, Alwin M. Pappenheimer Jr.'29, Thomas F. Pettigrew, Edward M. Purcell, William V. O. Quine, Eduard F. Sekler, Seymour Slive, F. Skiddy von Stade Jr. '38, Michael L. Walzer, and Robert L. Wolff '36.
"Most of us," Hartman said, "want the entire concept of an Inner Belt re-examined." The statement says the Massachusetts Turnpike extension and the MBTA expansion have substantially changed the overall transportation situation since the original conception of the Inner Belt 20 years ago.
The statement charges that the construction of the proposed Brookline-Elm St. route would destroy 1200 dwelling units, the homes of nearly 6 per cent of Cambridge's population. It reads: "2300 jobs will be lost, established neighborhoods will be permanently disrupted, elderly and low income families will suffer severe financial and emotional costs, and the city will be split in two."
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