Oct. 4, 1996
New Year's Date Eyed for Library Finish
By Ellie WalradthM
UW-RF News Bureau
A $7.1 million project to renovate and add to the Chalmer Davee Library at UW-River Falls is in its final stages.
The contract work, initially scheduled to be completed in October, is now expected to be finished around Jan., 1 1997, according to Library Director Chris Baum.
The construction project, which was to begin in June of last year, was delayed because negotiations after project bids were opened, says Jim Murphy, facilities engineer. Construction began in mid-July.
The project calls for extensive renovation to the existing 81,000 square foot building, which was built in 1954 and last expanded in 1968, and an addition of 24,000 square feet.
"Once completed, the facilities will be modernized and updated. The study spaces will be more attractive and the computer areas will be more spread out," Baum, says.
Construction workers are now finishing the exterior remodeling, and the bulk of the work still to be completed is inside the library. Construction activities limit access to many areas inside the library.
Just after the start of fall semester, students were given access to the periodicals section, which are now in their permanent location. Along with the periodicals, electronic references and inter-library loan services are also available to students, Baum says.
Access to the computer writing laboratories for journalism and English, the archives and the main-entry may be available to students in October, Murphy says.
Student access to the book stacks is still prohibited since they are in an on-going construction area, so the staff is "paging" materials-retrieving it directly for the students, Baum says. The constant goal of the library staff is to provide students with the same quality service they received before the library was under construction, so the staff members continue to stress retrieval services.
A major advantage once the building is completed is a substantial addition of study space, Baum points out. Two attractive lobbies with new furniture will accommodate students at new ground- and first-floor entrances, Baum says.
Still under construction, the first floor lobby area will house the circulation and check-out counter while the writing and journalism labs will occupy that space on the ground floor.
The movement of the library Archives and Government Documents section to permanent locations has already been finished, Murphy says.
Academic Computing, which is housed in North Hall, will move to its permanent location in the library during semester break in January.