There are probably people in the Office of Government and Community Affairs who wish that Saundra Graham would heed the old adage, "Never look a gift horse in the mouth."
However, unfortunately for Donald C. Moulton, the assistant vice president in that office, Graham virtually climbs into the mouth of every gift horse that comes from Harvard, perhaps suspicious that they may be somewhat Trojan in character.
Graham is a Cambridge city councillor and a leader of the Riverside community that borders Harvard near Peabody Terrace and Mather House. Her dislike for the University goes back several years and stems mostly from a feeling that Harvard has encroached upon Riverside housing without any compensation for the neighborhood's long-term residents.
After being denied a meeting with members of the Harvard Corporation three years ago, Graham and about 50 other community protesters appeared on the stage of the Tercentenary Theatre in the middle of the 319th Commencement exercises.
Former President Pusey managed to placate Graham for the time being, but with her election to the Council in 1971 she became more effective in the protection of Riverside interests.
Moulton announced Wednesday that the University would build 300 units of mixed housing in a combined development of the Treeland-Bindery and River-Howard St. sites in Riverside: 150 units for faculty and married students and 150 for the community.
But Harvard currently plans to take all of its 150 units from the 200 that will be built on the Treeland-Bindery site, leaving 50 there for the community plus 100 at River-Howard.
Graham has already let it be known that she wants an even split on those more attractive 200 riverfront units, with her community getting 100 of them. And she says she will fight Harvard both there and at the Sachs Estate (Shady Hill) if necessary.