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Cambridge Redevelopment Authority Records, 1952-2000

Identifier: 020

Scope and Contents

This collection contains material related to various urban renewal projects undertaken by the Cambridge Redevelopment Authority (CRA) from its establishment in 1956 through 2000. Photographs, architectural drawings, maps, and other materials document the planning process, plan execution, and community engagement activities of the CRA, with the bulk of the material related to their redevelopment of the Kendall Square, Wellington-Harrington, and Walden Square sections of Cambridge, Massachusetts. Of special note is the large number of photographs in the collection documenting the recreational programming of Just-a-Start, a youth training and community revitalization program in Cambridge’s Wellington-Harrington neighborhood.


  • 1952-2000

Access to Collection

This collection is open to research.

Conditions Governing Use

The material in this collection is subject to copyright and intellectual property restrictions. It is the responsibility of the researcher to understand and observe copyright law and to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyright. Researchers must obtain written permission from the copyright holder(s) if they wish to publish materials from this collection. Questions concerning copyright and permission to publish should be directed to the Cambridge Room, Cambridge Public Library Archives and Special Collections.

Biographical / Historical

The Cambridge Redevelopment Authority (CRA) was established in 1956 to implement urban renewal projects and other community development activities in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Projects administered since its organization include the Kendall Square Urban Renewal Project, the Wellington-Harrington Neighborhood Renewal Project, the Walden Square Urban Renewal Project, and the City-Wide Housing Rehabilitation Program. As of 2012, CRA urban redevelopment projects have resulted in approximately 6 million square feet of commercial development and over 2,000 newly constructed and rehabilitated residential housing units.


43.8 Linear feet

20.5 Cubic Feet

18 boxes (8 Hollinger, 1 half Hollinger, and 9 oversize)

14 Files (14 flat files in 6 drawers)

Language of Materials


Organization of Collection

This collection is organized into 3 series, each with subseries:

Series 1.1.1: Photographs, Kendall Square Development, 1963-1998

Series 1.1.2: Photographs, Kendall Square Predevelopment, 1963-1998

Series 1.2: Photographs, Other Projects, 1963-1998

Series 1.3: Photographs, Walden Square, 1963-1998

Series 1.4: Photographs, Wellington-Harrington, 1963-1998

Series 2.1: Slides, Kendall Square, 1970-2000

Series 2.2: Slides, Other Projects, 1970-2000

Series 2.3: Slides, Walden Square, 1970-2000

Series 2.4: Slides, Wellington-Harrington, 1970-2000

Series 2.5: Slides, Wellington-Harrington Reference Materials, 1970-2000

Series 3.1: Architectural Drawings and Maps, Kendall Square, 1952-1990

Series 3.2: Architectural Drawings and Maps, Other Projects, 1952-1990

Series 3.3: Architectural Drawings and Maps, Walden Square, 1952-1990

Series 3.4: Architectural Drawings and Maps, Wellington-Harrington, 1952-1990

Approximately 11,000 items grouped by Cambridge Redevelopment Authority project within each series.

Custodial History

Donated by the Cambridge Redevelopment Authority in July 2014.

Physical Description

11,000 Items

Physical Description

3,200 Photographic Prints

Physical Description

7,700 Photographic Slides

Processing Information

Processed by Michael Wilkerson in June and July 2015. Processed and encoded by Katherine Crowe January through March 2016.
Finding aid to the Cambridge Redevelopment Authority Records, 1952-2000 020
Michael Wilkerson and Katherine Crowe
March 2016
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge Room, Cambridge Public Library Archives and Special Collections Repository

Cambridge Public Library
449 Broadway
Cambridge MA 02138 USA