New Harvard VP for capital planning

Harvard continues to centralize its planning and budgeting with the filling of this new position. Of note for those interested in Allston is this list of priorities that does not include any in Allston. With the exception of the two HBS projects that will probably break ground in 2012, it still seems like it will be a long time before Harvard does any Allston development of significant magnitude.

But significant projects are looming: the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) urgently wants to renovate undergraduate Houses (at least a $1-billion project); several Harvard Medical School and FAS departments are space-constrained, as new laboratories have been filled to deal with the Allston deferral; and Harvard School of Public Health likely requires significant investment in its multibuilding campus, now that the idea of an entirely new school complex in Allston is indefinitely deferred. Alongside these items on the wish list, the campus facilities—some 26 million square feet—require regular maintenance and updating. And in the interest of maintaining its credit rating and preventing interest costs from soaring still further, Harvard has essentially put itself on a severe diet for debt financing, so hard choices will have to be made.

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