Campus libraries are changing to ensure that students, faculty, and staff can feel safe and focus on learning during the COVID crisis. Spacesaver can help free up space for social distancing while still preserving collections and promoting convenient access, and we can also help reduce high-touch surfaces to create a cleaner interior environment.
Here are 3 strategies to promote social distancing and disease prevention in campus libraries.
Move collections to an off-site library facility to free up space in on-campus libraries.
Consolidating printed materials, artwork, archives, and other collections in off-site library shelving facilities allows institutions to repurpose valuable space on campus. In the short term, this opens up enough space to enforce social distancing guidelines. In the longer term, these flexible spaces can be reconfigured to offer new technology and collaborative work areas.
Like many campus libraries, the 42 libraries on the UW-Madison campus have become more dynamic over the past few decades. As many of them were transforming to provide more collaborative spaces and access to advanced technology, campus leadership recognized the need for a comprehensive approach to shelving and storage for the libraries’ collections. They decided to build an off-site facility filled with high-bay shelving to optimize the space.
“I often refer to shelving as a lynchpin, because we’re doing other things with the space that the print once occupied. We’re completely rethinking how we’re using the spaces in our libraries today.”
-Ed Van Gemert, Former UW-Madison Vice Provost for Libraries
Working closely with architects and library faculty and staff, Spacesaver’s sales team, project managers, and engineers designed an XTend® High-Bay Archival Shelving System with an estimated capacity of more than 1.2 million volumes. The system has the potential to free up 30,000 square feet on campus while still providing convenient access to materials.
Reduce the stacks’ footprint with high-density mobile shelving.
Spacesaver’s high-density mobile shelving systems allow libraries to keep materials on-site in about half the space of static (non-moving) shelving. To reduce high-touch surfaces, consider powered mobile systems that allow users to open and close aisles from their personal mobile devices instead of using touchscreens.
To offer students more hands-on experience with cutting-edge technology, Montclair State University’s graphic design department needed more space for design labs. They wanted to relocate to the basement of the main campus library, but the entire floor was filled with book shelving and map cabinets. Wanting to keep those materials on-site, the library’s dean called on the nearby Spacesaver consultant to design a high-density mobile system that would consolidate the library’s existing shelving and cabinets into a smaller footprint.
The project freed up space for a classroom, a design studio, and an office to house large-format printers while also maintaining convenient access to collections. The university saved money on the project by avoiding an expensive addition and by repurposing their existing shelving and cabinets onto mobile Spacesaver carriages.
Reduce high-touch surfaces with app-controlled systems.
Eliminating high-touch surfaces is one of the best ways to prevent disease transmission. The TUSC™ Control app allows users to open and close aisles, browse and search for stored items, and view the system’s safety status, all without touching the system’s control pads.
Clients with mechanical-assist Spacesaver systems can have their systems converted to powered operation to enable the app. Cut costs by mounting your existing shelving and cabinets on Spacesaver mobile systems.
Spacesaver has been a trusted partner to universities and other educational institutions for half a century. We’re always here to answer your questions and help make the most of your space.
Our products are designed and manufactured in Wisconsin, USA, and our in-house project managers and engineers team up with your nearby Spacesaver distributor to provide space planning services, product installation, and long-term service and maintenance.