CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — A 168-year-old Cambridge church owned by Lesley University was moved 80 feet Thursday morning to the opposite corner of the site’s lot near Porter Square. The university moved the 188-ton North Prospect Church to make room for a new arts center. It wasn’t the structure’s first relocation. Originally built in Harvard Square in 1845, the church was moved to its location at the corner of Mass Ave and Roseland Street in 1867.
A worker uses a chain saw to cut one of the many wooden beams used to hold the rollers in place to move the structure. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Workers examine the structure while it creeps about three feet every ten minutes. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
A view from a nearby roof shows the stilts the structure was positioned on, and the church in its new location. (Courtesy)
People gathering on Massachusetts Avenue to watch the church move.(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
A worker makes an adjustment to one of the hydraulic lifts beneath the structure.(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
From the rear, you can see the church is gutted. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
An artist rendering of the planned arts center. (Courtesy Lesley University)