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Coop Asks Board for License to Run Cafe

By Courtney A. Coursey, CRIMSON STAFF WRITER

The Cambridge License Commission voted unanimously last night to take under advisement The Harvard Cooperative Society's request for a "common victualer's license" and an entertainment license.

The Coop requested the licenses to allow it to operate the cafe that is currently under construction in the Mass. Ave. portion of the store, Leigh Reynolds, manager of the Coop, said at the meeting last night.

John P. Donaldson, general manager of The Coop, described the hearing as a "formality."

However, obtaining the licenses may not be so easy, considering questions that arose at the meeting.

"I'm not sure if there is a need for another restaurant in Harvard Square," Commission Executive Officer Richard V. Scali said.

Donaldson said The Coop is working on an arrangement to obtain food for the cafe from businesses in Harvard Square.

"We want to give the business to a supplier right here in the Square," Donaldson said. "Our goal is to support local Cambridge and Square businesses...as much as possible."

But the coffee and espresso planned for the eatery will be brewed on the spot, Donaldson was quick to note.

Construction is scheduled to be completed by early December, Donaldson added.

The cafe, which will serve sandwiches, pastries, coffees and soft drinks, will be on the second floor of the building, which is being transformed into a four-floor bookstore, Donaldson said.

If granted the entertainment license, the cafe will be able to have poetry readings, live music performances and one television, according to information obtained from the commission.

The commission will vote later this month on whether to grant the licenses.

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