Tag Archives: Library

Case Study | Contactless Lockers for Wake Forest University

Case Study Contactless Lockers for Wake Forest University

Building the Library of the Future at Wake Forest University

With a mission to inspire learning, advance knowledge, and build community, the Z. Smith Reynolds Library (or ZSR for short), provides services to over 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students at Wake Forest University, a private research university in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Creating an efficient, contactless way to connect people with materials

When COVID-19 hit the United States and schools and libraries all over the country shut down — including ZSR — the library’s Associate Dean, Mary Beth Lock, started to wonder: “How can we continue to meet the needs of our students and faculty?”

The library’s shutdown meant students and faculty couldn’t access the building — or its materials — in the usual way. “We knew we could utilize our foyer, which is open 24 hours, for pick-ups,” Lock says. “We started pushing more online services, including focusing on making the materials in our collections available for online request.” To keep providing for the students and faculty during the library’s shutdown the staff set up a make-shift exchange area in the foyer where materials were placed in paper bags for pick-up. This was based on the honor system to trust that people would only take items that were labeled for them, however, when valuable equipment like computers needed to be returned from repair, the paper bag solution was really not feasible.

Many months prior — in conversations about the long-term future of the library — smart lockers were brought up in a conversation. They were largely considered a “pipe dream” investment. Then, the world changed and in the midst of budget cuts and online requests continuing to grow, smart lockers were posed again as a solution. This time, there were no objections — the laminate, smart lockers would provide secure access, and most importantly — help the library carry out its mission of being of service in the way that made the most sense for students, faculty, and staff.

Smart lockers provide a secure exchange of goods and a conversation piece for the library

The adoption of lockers by the library patrons was seamless. The laminate smart lockers were designed to maximize the number of openings by understanding the typical size was of materials borrowed. Smaller openings were designed on top and a large opening at the bottom for any bulk rentals. When a student or faculty member is notified that their materials are ready for pick up, they simply use their existing campus ID cards as their key to open the locker. It’s a seamless user experience.

The system made so much sense that shortly after the locker bank was installed, because the locker system is smart, ZSR had access to the usage data of the lockers. They quickly realized the lockers were hovering around 90% capacity the majority of the time.

This gave the library all the justification they needed to order additional columns to add to the locker bank and provide more available openings to deposit rentals. This also allowed for the tech support team to be able to have locker openings allocated to safely deposit repaired computers and provide A/V equipment rentals.

The modular nature of the laminate locker columns made for an easy installation and addition of the new locker columns. Rather than doing standard sizes, the library designed locker openings that allowed for different sized and shaped equipment rentals, such as, tripods. Even with the additional locker columns, the lockers were so popular the library had to reduce the usual 10-day hold to five days due to the lockers always being near capacity from demand.

Contact Us for More Locker Use Info

Learn how we can improve your library with our great product offerings. Contact us online today or call us at 1-800-696-3453.

Flexible Shelving for an Illinois Library | Case Study

Flexible Shelving for Illinois Library

A Commitment to Learning

On most campuses, the library is a lively hub of learning and collaboration. But students and faculty at Harper College in Palatine, Illinois, found that working in the old library was more about endurance than enjoyment. The aging building hadn’t been remodeled in more than 20 years, and it was dark, overcrowded, and noisy. Perhaps most importantly, the building’s labyrinthine layout made it difficult for students to find their way around.

harper college shelving periodicals
“We needed to find a better place for them to learn.” – Njambi Kamoche, Dean | Resources for Learning

Sleek Shelving for an Open Learning Layout

The library’s main level is bright, open, and busy. The planning team wanted to provide casual collaboration spaces on this level, along with access to popular periodicals, digital media, best sellers, popular reading, graphic novels, and other materials. Counter-height cantilever shelving contributes to the open feel, allowing natural light from large windows to fill the space. A-frame shelving and carts provide storage and display for DVDs and other media. The flexible shelving is fitted with casters that allow staff to move them when they want to repurpose the space.

The third floor is dedicated to independent research and quiet study. Tall flexible shelving units house the majority of the library’s collection, and study carrels offer privacy. Throughout the library, Spacesaver shelving was fitted with custom end panels that integrate with the rest of the building’s interior design. The result is a sleek, clean look that unifies the facility while also providing convenient access to the library’s collection.

harper college a frame shelves
A-Frame casters allow for more flexibility, whenever needed

Secure Archives with Preservation in Mind

The Spacesaver design team also worked with Bradford Systems to design a secure area to house the college’s archives and special collections. They chose 4-Post shelving mounted on a high-density mobile system to store archival boxes and printed materials. The archives were designed with room to grow. Some of the high-density storage shelves are currently empty, awaiting future acquisitions, which gave Harper College peace of mind for future collection storage. The cabinet trays can be raised or lowered without special tools, allowing staff to adjust tray spacing to maximize space and accommodate objects of different heights. Additional trays can also be added as the collection grows in the future. All in all, the success of this project was a great accomplishment for all parties involved.

Harper College Archives Storage
Archive Storage for More Flexibility and Ease of Browsing

Contact Us for All Your Library Storage Needs

If you want to learn how you can get more out of your existing library space, contact us online today or call us at 1-800-696-3453.

Project of the Month: Millikin University Library

Millikin Wood Veneer Panels on Existing Shelving preview e1513785857472 1

Millikin University Library Upgrades to Spacesaver High-density Shelving

Background:

Client: Millikin University
Departments: Library Main Stacks
Completion: 8/03/2017

Millikin University was building a new library as a part of their University Commons facility, opening for the 2017 fall semester.  They wanted to update their collection using powered high-density storage to allow for more shelf space in less square footage.

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The Abe Lincoln Presidential Library: A Library of and for the Future

abe lincoln presidential library

Sure, you’ve got your local library, and maybe you’ve visited it often enough to realize it’s real value to your local community. We’ve talked about the re-purposing of these public spaces enough to know they evolve and change to accommodate the needs of their patrons.

But what about the presidential library? Turns out, the idea of the Presidential Library began with President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1939: when he not only donated an estate to house the various documents and records of his administration – but also set a precedence later followed by Truman and other Presidents through the years that those important records, which in many ways shaped this country, be kept and cared for in a library setting.

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Presently, because of 1955’s Presidential Libraries Act, then 1978’s Presidential Records Act of 1978, and also, finally the Presidential Libraries Act of 1986… Presidential libraries are maintained and funded through both public and private resources – enabling these libraries to become valuable and extensive archives of public record and history.

So now the question is: how do you build a library that contains so much valuable history, while controlling the investment needed to build it as well as the way the library can function for the public… AND then accommodate the planned growth of it’s archives in the future?

Turns out even the folks at the The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois knew: Use the most innovative storage products available in a way that continually allows for growth and public use.

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By utilizing High-Density Mobile Storage in archival, non-public areas and as well; incorporating custom micro-film storage, art storage and smaller High-Density systems into working, processing and high-access storage areas – the library is able to provide ample room for public access, display and working spaces. see for yourself:

The future of the library is evolving, and capacity is always an issue – these products and innovations make it possible for our Presidential Libraries to grow in the future and provide to the public as intended for generations to come.

Download our Abe Lincoln Presidential Library Case Study to learn more.

The Re-Repurposed Library

stlouis central public library outside

The next chapter in your library story… probably the next few.

Library /ˈlīˌbrerē/noun (plural libraries)

A building or room containing collections of books, periodicals, and sometimes films and recorded music for use or borrowing by the public or the members of an institution.
Oxford Dictionary 2012

This definition of library was taken from a recent edition of the Oxford Dictionary. While it is a true description, it lacks detail. Libraries are so much more now than before.

books_being_stackupLong gone are the days when the main purpose of a library was to store the books and media for the community to borrow, for a period of two weeks or be subjected to a small fine for a tardy return. Today, libraries are repurposing themselves to address the ever-changing needs and wants of the community. It isn’t just the nerdy kid with Buddy Holly glasses who visits the library anymore. No, it’s people seeking employment or self-improvement visiting the library. It’s teens looking for a place to hang out who go to the library. Families looking for entertainment without having to secure a second mortgage go to the library. And, yes, folks still go to the library in search of nostalgia in the form of printed books and periodicals.

Library repurposing remains a strong and increasing trend across the country. Computer labs, employment and entrepreneurial incubators, conference and workshop venues, youth centers and deliverable services are sprouting up everywhere. A few libraries have even designated space for coffee cafés, allowing patrons an upscale literary experience. Some of repurposing is reactive, but much of it is pro-active. Libraries realize that they must repurpose to maintain and grow their membership.

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Bradford Systems offers many storage solutions for any type of library repurposing project – because we simply live in this world; the world of solving space issues, and that is what repurposing a library is all about.

Do you need more space and a capital campaign to build a new wing is not realistic?
Consider a mobile storage solution and storing infrequently accessed materials off-site (or onsite in an area you didn’t think you could use). You will be able to decrease your storage footprint by at least 50% and provide the area for new library services.

Thinking of adding a new or making over an existing reading room?
How about using 4-post and cantilever shelving, or perhaps some custom modular casework to add some pizazz to the new space? With this type of storage and organization, you’ll be able to showcase a variety of media, making it a more inviting space for your patrons.

Is an area for teens to hang out or a computer lab is on your To Do list?
Try 4-post and case type shelving available with an endless palette of color choices and end panel, workspace and counter top materials such as granite, marble and wood laminate and frosted acrylic. Glass movable walls or inter-changeable desk/table areas can also add a inviting “hang-out” aura. It’ll make the new space pop, will be extremely durable and won’t break your budget.

Check out all the ways Bradford can help with your library storage and repurposing quandaries here.

St. Louis Central Public Library: A Library Repurposing Showcase

stlouis central public library outside

When a library as famous and well visited as the St. Louis Central Library (St Louis, MO) undergoes a massive renovation, great care and consideration must go into the planning process. The iconic building was constructed in 1912 based on the Italian Renaissance style and was frequently visited by people from all over the world. But the historic majesty of the structure could not make up for the lack of modern amenities necessary for a library to thrive in the 21st century.

There were several challenges that needed to be addressed as the planning began. There was an absence of technology integration in the building, as well as a lack of communal spaces for patrons to use for study and collaboration. Areas that have become essential to a library’s success as a community resource, like computer labs, ten spaces and even meeting rooms, were missing from St. Louis Central.

stlouis_central_library_sideview

With so many challenges to overcome, the St. Louis Central Library integrated many different shelving solutions into their renovation project in order to open up space for repurposing and create a sleek, modern appearance in the historic building.

Static Spacesaver cantilever shelving was used throughout the public access areas of the library for easy browsing by patrons. Cantilever shelving is the most common system used in libraries, due to the on-site reconfigurability, but several custom features were also integrated into the final design of the various shelving units throughout the main library.

LED lighting was installed onto the Spacesaver cantilever-shelving units throughout many areas of the library, including the fine arts, science and technology and rare books rooms. This required a special base for the cantilever units onto which the vertical lighting fixtures could be affixed. These fixtures not only look like a part of the shelving (painted in the same finish) but are used to light the aisles, in lieu of adding any additional room lighting that might detract from the historic chandeliers and ornate ceilings. The LED lighting is also extremely energy efficient, and lower in cost to operate than traditional florescent bulbs.

inside_stlouis_central library

Custom glass end panels were used in the areas with LED lighting integrated into the shelving. The glass panels are subsequently illuminated – making the stacks look almost like works of art themselves, and create a design feature unique to the St. Louis Central Library.

Special red, acrylic end panels were used on the cantilever-shelving units in the showcase space on the main level of the library called “the center for the reader.”

Glass end panels were also installed on the cantilever shelving used in the media room. Because these cantilever shelves were designed with pullout drawers to store disks and other media like DVDs, no lighting was integrated.

bookshelve_carts_stlouis_library

In the children’s area, cantilever shelving was outfitted with a custom base, wrapped in solid surface and then placed on heavy-duty casters so that the area is completely reconfigurable on the fly by the library staff.

The use of Spacesaver mechanical assist high-density mobile shelving enabled the library to consolidate the collection from their seven-tiered central system onto just three interior mezzanine-like floors, plus the basement level of the library. Not only does the new stack space meet fire and seismic codes, it is brighter and easier to navigate.

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The high-density mobile storage used throughout the library also helped open up existing spaces for new functions. There is now a teen room, which incorporates study areas, lounge seating, and even a small theater-like TV viewing area. The library also added a café, a book club meeting room, and a studio for movie, music and video game access.

Download the St. Louis Public Library Case Study here to learn more!

Download the St. Louis Public Library Project Lookbook here to see more areas of this beautiful library!