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Harvard may be among the bidders for a 28-acre plot of land in Brighton which the Archdiocese of Boston recently put on the market, according to published reports.
The Boston Globe reported Friday that though Boston College (BC) is a leading contender, “some speculation” indicates that Harvard could be “another suitor.”
But University spokesperson Lauren M. Marshall denied Friday that the University was looking into buying the land.
Harvard has “no plans to purchase the property,” she said. “That’s just our position on it.”
The land—which includes a three-story mansion—has been valued at up to $100 million, according to the Associated Press.
Archbishop Sean O’Malley’s decision to sell the land was “really the only option,” according to the Rev. Christopher Coyne, a spokesperson for O’Malley. O’Malley has said he will not use parish assets to settle the $85 million in abuse claims that the church faces.
According to Ray Mellone, a Brighton community organizer, the likelihood of Harvard shelling out millions for the Brighton lot is “a possibility but not a probability.”
Mellone noted that Harvard still has a lot of developing to do on the hundreds of acres of land it owns in Allston.
“I don’t think that there is any truth to the rumor that Harvard has any interest—it doesn’t make sense,” he said.
BC is “probably first in line” for the property, he said, due in part to its strong ties to the Catholic Church. The college, he says, has “been renting property from the Archdiocese for years, and they’ve developed a relationship.”
Mellone added that the 28 acres would be a welcome addition to BC, a college “pressed for land.”
But Dudley S. Mulcahy, real estate chancellor of the Archdiocese, said no decisions have yet been made.
“Nobody’s formed any opinions as to how this will happen,” he said. “The Archdiocese has no position on who it will be sold to or when.”
—Material from the Associated Press was used in this story.
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