Library Renovation About to Begin
The Ingram Library is about to undergo a 12-month, $8 million construction project that will renovate two floors and recreate the state capitol office of Georgia House Speaker Thomas B. Murphy.
Chris Huff, renovation project advocate, and Sean Murphy, Parrish Construction superintendent, consult together as they prepare to build temporary walls in the lobby and other areas.
Blue tape marks the areas where temporary walls will be constructed to shield library visitors from the work. The library will not close and Parrish Construction has agreed to work around the clock with the noisier construction scheduled after midnight.
One of the challenges this project presents is that the renovation will be done only in existing space and not in an expansion of additional square footage, said Chris Huff, renovation project advocate.
“The library has developed plans for additional and expanded services, but fully implementing these plans requires an almost doubling of space for the library,” said Huff. “While this renovation project will succeed in refreshing two floors of the library in dramatic ways that bring them more in line with the needs of a 21st century university, we are still having to temper our desires for fully satisfying the needs of a campus this size because of the limitations of our existing square footage.
“Another major challenge is figuring out how to continue library services throughout the construction. Within about a year's time, virtually every library staff member, every library service and much of our patron furniture will be moved at least once. The library and university staff are outstanding at providing the needed support to make this happen. But it is still disruptive and challenging during the process.”
As the project advocate, Huff works closely with Steering Committee members and has helped develop the overall goals of the renovation. He will be involved in the day-to-day operation, help to coordinate the related library work and serve as a representative of the library throughout the process.
Anne Barnhart, head of Library Instructional Services, chairs the library’s Renovation Publicity Committee, which includes Catherine Hendrix and Margot Davis. They are acting as a liaison between the construction project and the people affected by it. They will update the staff and the community of new developments and keep the students aware of the changes and new locations for materials they need for their studies.
“I think the most challenging part of this project has been to keep all of the details straight and to get each issue resolved in the proper order,” said Barnhart. “We’ve had to compress the books on the shelves to free up space, then remove the empty bookshelves, then put up signage to let students know where the books are now. That is just an example of how each seemingly simple action is actually a multi-step process. We have a strong internal committee to keep all of the details straight and it is only through having many eyes looking at the situation that we are able to prevent problems.”
Members of the Library Renovation Steering Committee are: Lorene Flanders, dean of Libraries; Chris Huff, associate dean of Libraries; Michael Aldrich, assistant vice president for Academic Affairs; Samson Oyegunle, Program Manager, Office of Real Estate and Facilities; Mike Renfrow, assistant vice president for Campus Planning and Facilities; Mike Conley, Executive Director of Architecture, Engineering and Construction Project Services, Renovation Project Advocate for Administration; Elsa Pena, Campus Architect, Architecture, Engineering and Construction Project Services; Rob Yawn, Senior Network Engineer, Information Technology Services; Hank Houser and David Esterline, Houser Walker Architecture; and Dennis Townsend, Georgia State Financing and Investment Commission
This is the last week that all floors will be accessible to the public. Stop in for a tour Thursday, Feb. 25, at 10:15 a.m. and take a last look at Ingram. For more information on the renovation project, e-mail Ask A Librarian at firstname.lastname@example.org. To view photos of the libraries on campus that date back to the 1930s, go to the Photo Gallery.
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