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American Repertory Theater Begins Construction on New Home in Harvard’s Allston Campus

An architectural rendering of the new American Repertory Theater building in Harvard's Allston campus.
An architectural rendering of the new American Repertory Theater building in Harvard's Allston campus. By Courtesy of Dematerial
By Elyse C. Goncalves and Matan H. Josephy, Crimson Staff Writers

Construction is underway on the new location of the American Repertory Theater in Harvard’s Allston campus, five years after it received a $100 million donation to fund the effort to move the theater.

The A.R.T’s new location at 175 North Harvard St. will feature two new performance venues alongside studios, an area for outdoor performance, and office space, the organization announced in a Wednesday press release.

Hedge-fund manager David E. Goel ’93 and Stacey L. Goel pledged $100 million in 2019 to fund the project. Construction will continue into 2026 and the theater has not announced an expected opening date.

“David and Stacey stepped forward at an important moment for the A.R.T., giving generously not because of the strong foundation that already exists but because they see what is possible,” interim Harvard President Alan M. Garber ’76 said in the press release.

The A.R.T., which was founded in 1980, currently runs out of the Loeb Drama Center, near the Harvard Graduate School of Education. While it is a professional theater that has produced several Tony Award-winning shows, it is also home to the Harvard-Radcliffe Dramatic Club and is used for many courses in the Theater, Dance, and Media concentration.

In November, when the Boston Planning and Development Agency unanimously approved the plans for the new location, staff members explained that the A.R.T.’s current location was limited in space, technology, and accessibility infrastructure.

Wednesday’s announcement also stressed the new center’s intended role as a gathering place for Allston residents amid concerns from local artists that the projects in Allston will drive them out of the neighborhood by displacing local studios.

The Goel Center will offer “free Wi-Fi, food and beverage service, public restrooms, gathering spaces, indoor and outdoor public art and performance, and room rental opportunities,” according to the press release.

A.R.T. Executive Director Kelvin Dinkins Jr. said in the release that he hopes to continue the A.R.T.’s legacy in its new location, and to bring crowds through the A.R.T.’s new doors at the Goel Center.

“We look forward to audiences accompanying us on this journey to completion,” Dinkins said. “We are excited to welcome them to our new home pulsing with creative energy and community as we launch A.R.T.’s next chapter.”

—Alma T. Barak and Ben Ali H. Brown contributed reporting.

—Staff writer Elyse C. Goncalves can be reached at Follow her on X @e1ysegoncalves or on Threads @elyse.goncalves.

—Staff writer Matan H. Josephy can be reached at Follow him on X @matanjosephy.

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