Harvard Guarantees Housing To Displaced Boston Tenants

Approximately 800 housing units -- 500 of them low-income -- will be constructed on a ten acre site in Boston currently owned by Harvard. The development will replace existing housing which must be razed to make way for hospital expansion under the Affiliated Hospital Center plan announced by the University last month.

Unique features of the housing arrangement -- under the auspices of the Roxbury Tenants of Harvard Association and Building Systems International, the housing developers -- include a provision that guarantees "appropriate housing" for displaced tenants before any construction on the hospital expansion can begin.

"Nobody will be thrown out into the street." Donald Moulton assistant to the Vice-President for Government and Community Affairs said last week.

The housing development will consist of both conventional high rise and some low-rise units of not more than four stories, and will offer 300 units to be leased at market rate. Harvard will probably lease approximately 150 of the high-rise market rate. Harvard will probably lease approximately 150 of the high-rise market rate units for medical students and hospital personnel. Moulton said.

Tenants Approval


Tenants retained overall approval of architectural and construction details. A decision to utilize pre-cast concrete fabrications in constructing the units qualified the development for government funding beyond the amount called for by the low-income provisions of the housing project.

Other tenant priorities included low rise, low-income family units, and construction of a 2000 car garage to be covered with a landscaped garden. The low-rise units will approximate living conditions which the hospital extension will destroy, while income from space leased in the garage will revert to the tenant developers. Tennis courts, a swimming pool, and several playground areas are also slated for construction.

"Tenant control over design represents a people's victory." John Sharratt, a project architect said last week.

Total cost for the project -- which will be completed by spring 1975 -- is estimated at $25 million.