The final selection for the location of this facility (the Manned Spacecraft Center) came down to a choice between Cambridge, Massachusetts and Houston, Texas. The former had several advantages, including ready access to space-related lab and research facilities (MIT, Draper Laboratory, Lincoln Labs, USAF ESC, etc) and a high availability of technical personnel. The latter had lots of space, access to open training areas, cheap land, and (some say most important) was in the home state of VP Lyndon Baines Johnson, a prominent space program champion looking to bolster Texas home-state support for a campaign in 1964.

Needless to say, the astronauts all got good barbecue, and if you use the phrase "Uh, Cambridge, we have a problem," people look at you funny.