Library Review: Library Buildings
Changing spaces: the journey so far
This presentation was created for the UC&R Wales event "Watch this space", Trinity University College Carmarthen, 21 May 2010. It summarises the changes that have taken place within the Cardiff University Library Service over the last few years and provides further details on the Arts and Social Studies Library refurbishment that took place in 2009/10.
The future's bright: Arts and Social Studies Library
Funding from the Wolfson Foundation helped meet the cost of the new Wolfson Floor on the lower ground level of the Library, enabling the Graphic Services unit to move into new accommodation and creating a spacious wireless-enabled eLounge with flexible seating, alongside a bank of fixed PCs. Three bookable seminar rooms and enhanced facilities for the housing of Special Collections materials complete a vibrant and inspiring new addition to the library's facilities.
Meanwhile, colourful new mobile shelving has been installed on the top floor to house journal collections more efficiently, whilst freeing up space to eliminate overcrowding in the book stacks.
A change of tune: the Music Library moves to Aberdare Hall
Now known as the Music Library at Aberdare Hall, this library has relocated from the Music School building (freeing up valuable space in the School) and moved into attractive new premises in neighbouring Aberdare Hall. Natural daylight, courtyard views and space-saving mobile shelving are all welcome new additions resulting from the project.
Help yourselves at Bute and Architecture Libraries
These two neighbouring libraries now benefit from RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) Technology which allows library users to issue and return books themselves, freeing up library staff to help users with other tasks. The resulting space savings mean that Bute now benefits from a completely opened-out entrance area with informal seating for laptop users, while the entrance to Architecture has been reconfigured to create a group study room to enhance the facilities available to users.
Walls may have ears, but bookshelves have eyes in the Biomedical Sciences Library
In summer 2009 RFID was installed in the Biomedical Sciences Library, along with ground-breaking electronic book-tracking technology provided by SmartBlade from Intellident Ltd. Cardiff University is the first test site in the world to contribute to the development of this technology - find out more about this pioneering technology.
Llandough and Whitchurch Libraries combine forces
The Archie Cochrane Library, which was formerly located within Llandough Hospital itself, reopened in December 2009 in a new building at the entrance to the Llandough site. This library now incorporates the former Whitchurch Postgraduate Library and the move reflects the relocation of mental health services to Llandough by the NHS Local Health Board. The new library benefits from RFID self issue.
Engineering a new Trevithick Library
The reopening of Trevithick Library in January 2008 brought enhanced layout, ventilation and lighting to the library, plus improved staff office space.Wolfson Foundation funding, University capital and corporate sponsorship enabled the rebuild, which also offers new facilities such as group study rooms, a research lounge and dedicated IT training facilities. See a timeline of the refurbishment.
Aberconway Library: the shape of things to come
In summer 2007 Aberconway Library underwent a major refurbishment project to upgrade facilities in response to user consultation, and to bring all the library's services together under one roof. You can read more about the refurbishment (Cardiff University members only).
Fact-finding and inspiration
Library staff have visited university sites around the UK to view recent innovative practice in provision of space for research, learning and teaching. Recent visits have included the new Information Commons for undergraduates, which complements the library at Sheffield University, and to three libraries in Oxford, which demonstrated a variety of research environments.
Library Design Special Interest Group
This new group for Higher Education Libraries met at Sheffield Hallam University to discuss issues surrounding library design and the evaluation of the use of library spaces. Visits were made to The Adsetts Centre at Sheffield Hallam and to the Information Commons at Sheffield University.
WHELF Study Tour to Dublin
The Wales Higher Education Libraries Forum recently organised a study tour of Dublin HE libraries in Autumn 2008, attended by two staff members from the University Library Service. Libraries of Trinity College and Dublin City University, among others, were visited.
SCONUL Buildings visit to Bournemouth and Southampton
In November 2008 a visit was made to Bournemouth and Southampton University libraries, both of which have undergone significant extensions / refurbishments, to find out how they have updated their library spaces to meet modern requirements such as flexibility, group study space and extended opening hours.
David Wilson Library, University of Leicester
This £32m project set out to extend and refurbish a 1975 library building to create an adaptable, light, modern library incorporating a range of new facilities.
LIBER Architecture Group Conference, Budapest
In April 2008 a representative from the University Library Service attended the LIBER (Association of European Research Libraries) Architecture Group Conference in Budapest and produced a report to illustrate the variety of library environments visited in Budapest during the Conference.