Harvard’s expansion to Allston OKed
A year after Harvard unveiled its sweeping 10-year blueprint for new development and renovation in Allston, the Boston Redevelopment Authority unanimously approved the master plan.
The plan includes: a new 60,000-square-foot, 3,000-seat basketball arena and renovating and expanding the university’s historic football stadium; a 200-room hotel and conference center along Western Avenue; a 300,000 square-foot building with ground floor-retail and institutional use above on the site of the old Charlesview Apartments; three new business school buildings that will house a mix of academic, office and common spaces; and the renovation of two other student housing buildings on the business school campus.
“I truly believe that no institution of higher education has a more exciting opportunity for innovative growth, in an intellectual and entrepreneurial environment as dynamic as we have in Boston and Cambridge,” Harvard President Drew Faust wrote in a letter to Allston residents.
Harvard’s presence in Allston is hardly news. It became expanding into the Boston neighborhood during the 1980s and now owns 359 acres in Allston, nearly double the size of its Cambridge campus.
Allston residents, however, expressed concern about the development’s impact on traffic, parking, retail, and public spaces. The Harvard Allston Task Force said it plans to work with Mayor-elect Marty Walsh to address these issues.