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The Harvard Graduate Center is the first modern building on the campus, it was also the first endorsement of the modern style by a major university and was seen in the national and architectural presses as a turning point in the acceptance of the aesthetic in the United States.

The Architects Collaborative (TAC) was a bold choice for the typically traditional university. Though it cannot be said that Gropius was the sole designer, those that held strongly to his ideals collaboratively designed Harkness with large windows, flowing rooms, floating facades on raised pilotis. The building was completed in 1950, and was one of the first major projects in the Architects Collaborative office. The buildings are now primarily used as a student center and as a dormitory complex for Harvard Law School.