EDWARD J. LOGUE He loved cities, loved them with
an informed and orderly passion. Ed Logue's lifelong
love affair with cities enhanced the lives of hundreds
of thousands. His insistence on high standards of
design influenced a generation of architects and
In New Haven, Boston, New York and around the world,
he left a legacy of economic revival animated by
what he called "planning with people." Ed Logue
did not court controversy, nor did he duck it. Those
who knew him knew that the slower he talked, the
faster he was thinking.
Born in Philadelphia, he was a graduate of Yale
College and Yale Law School. In World War II, he
was a bombardier and won eight Battle Stars. He
worked for Connecticut Governor Chester Bowles and
served on the embassy staff when Mr. Bowles was
US ambassador to India.
In 1954, Ed Logue got into the urban renewal field
when he became development administrator of New
Haven. He helped transform that city until 1960,
when the new mayor of Boston, John F. Collins, asked
him to revive the sagging fortunes of New England's
largest city. Although Boston is a clannish city
where politics is a contact sport, Ed's focused
patience won over skeptics. He spent hours at kitchen
tables in neighborhoods genetically hostile to "outsiders."
Years later, the residents of places like Marskdale
Gardens and Savin Hill Green can be grateful for
Boston's most notable urban renewal project during
his tenure was Government Center, which replaced
Scollay Square, the honky-tonk haven for sailors
and undergraduates. To design the land use pattern,
Ed hired an aspiring architect, I. M. Pei. "Just
as Charles Bulfinch put his stamp on a changing
Boston at the beginning of the 19th century, Ed
Logue made a lasting contribution to the Boston
of the 20th century," said Thomas H. O'Connor, the
Boston College historian, an authority on Boston's
A summer resident of Martha's Vineyard, Ed sponsored
conservation efforts, including the Vineyard Open
Land Foundation. He died in West Tisbury in January
of 2000 at 78. In 1967, Ed tried elective politics,
running for mayor of Boston. He lost, but was not
out of public service for long. From Albany, Governor
Nelson A. Rockefeller called, asking Ed to head
the state's Urban Development Corporation.
He accepted, and in six years supervised 50 building
projects and 33,000 housing units throughout the
state. He changed the weed-strewn wastes of Welfare
Island off Manhattan into the thriving town renamed
Visitors to the crypt of St. Paul's Cathedral in
London encounter a phrase at the tomb of its architect,
Christopher Wren: Si monumentum requiris circumpsice.
"If you seek his monument, look around you." On
a fine summer day by the East River, those who look
at Roosevelt Island can think happily of Ed Logue.
- Martin F. Nolan
© 2003. FRIENDS OF EDWARD J. LOGUE.