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By Laurie Hays

The efforts of a newly formed community action group trying to halt the construction of the Observatory Hill athletic complex have met a new response from Harvard officials. They are confused.

At their meeting Thursday night, the residents discussed strategies for gaining the support of the Cambridge City Council to ask the city to take the property by eminent domain.

The reason Harvard may be confused, however, is because the residents appear to have something else in mind.

The request to have the city purchase the Harvard-owned property is a stalling tactic, to hold the bulldozers back until the group can ask the state to consider changing a state law to make all academic institutions in Cambridge conform to zoning regulations.

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