MIT Reports to the President 1996-97


This year, the Planning Office undertook a wide range of Institute planning projects. Some of the accomplishments are listed below.

Continuing revision of the most active elements of the MIT Capital Development Program (the extensive inventory of MIT's capital projects, their estimated costs, and their location on the campus) was an important part of support provided by the Planning Office with regard to the emerging development plan initiated to update the underlying financial models based on changing institutional and market economic conditions. This document provides a comprehensive picture of MIT's capital needs and their implications for land and financial resources for the next 10 to 15 years, and is a key resource for all new on-campus building initiatives.

The Planning Office also provided continuing support to Resource Development in preparing fund-raising program materials for the proposed addition to the Media Laboratory; the Computing, Information, and Intelligence Sciences (CIIS) building; a new facility for Brain and Cognitive Sciences; and a proposed Center for the Performing Arts.

In an attempt to complete the land assembly for the east campus, efforts continue to acquire the former City fire station at 350 Main Street in Kendall Square.

Progress continues in support of two major roadway improvement initiatives which began two years ago. The first involves the Memorial Drive/Massachusetts Avenue intersection where new signals and turning lanes will improve pedestrian safety and traffic movement. The second, reconstruction of Massachusetts Avenue from Memorial Drive to Lafayette Square, will improve both safety and aesthetics along this major transportation artery. In addition, the Massachusetts Avenue reconstruction will include support for increasing the use of bicycles as a commuting option.

Parking on campus remains an issue of great concern. The Planning Office provided the staff support for an ad hoc task force charged with conducting a review of policies and making recommendations for change as well as continuing to provide staff support for the Institute's Parking and Transportation Committee.

Support of the Athletics department continued this year with the development of plans for improved tennis facilities, expanded rowing facilities, and improved security around the outdoor fields. The office also continued to provide support for the development of the final elements of the Central Athletic Facilities Plan.

Progress continued on a comprehensive housing plan which would lead to the near-term development of graduate housing in the Albany and Sidney Street areas. An urban design study is underway with construction expected to begin next year. In addition, the Planning Office staff is exploring ways of stimulating MIT and private sector partnerships designed to increase the housing inventory available to the MIT community.

The office continued to provide planning and staff support to the Office of Government and Community Relations, the Real Estate Office, and Physical Plant's Space Administration section. In addition, the office continued to produce a variety of materials during the year in support of academic planning.

More information about this department can be found on the World Wide Web at the following URL:

O. Robert Simha

MIT Reports to the President 1996-97