The 14,000 square-foot William Rand Keenan, Jr. Library at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, N.C., was recently redesigned to support the curriculum at the College of Veterinary Medicine, animal and human health and life sciences.
Designed by Atlanta-based Foil Wyatt Architects and Atlanta-based Jova/Daniels/Busby (FWAJDB) Architects, the library encompasses flexible interior and exterior spaces that support state-of-the-art technology, according to its designer. The facility is divided into well-lit zones to provide different layers of privacy so students can choose the zone that suits their study needs.
Six individual areas were designed for independent study and testing, group study rooms, technology-rich conference rooms and a multi-purpose room equipped with a 20-foot white board wall.
“Our mission when designing the new space was to essentially showcase the veterinary library and its role in the college’s animal health research initiatives and, within the library, to create a series of spaces to support those functions and requirements,” says Michael Rindsberg, lead designer for the project. “We wanted to create the next generation of technology-rich learning spaces.”
A repositioned reference desk serves as the nexus and focal point of the library with a central location in the space to promote staff and student interaction, and a large central space offers the flexibility to be opened for events and seminars and flexible classroom areas provide essential, additional space for the student body, according to the designer.
Since the renovation, technology lending at the Veterinary Medicine Library has reportedly increased 500 percent, laptop use has increased 374 percent and other technology device usage is up by more than 1600 percent.
Laptops and tablet personal computers are available through the library’s technology lending service along with a variety of other devices including headphones, digital voice recorders, iPods, tripods, scientific calculators and digital cameras.
Devices like light pens, flash drives and in-person, point-of-use and e-board promotions have been added to their technology lending offering. The library is one of the only libraries equipped with a Zeutschel overhead book scanner making it possible to digitize sensitive materials at an extremely high processing speed.
Library visitors have access to workstations providing quick access to the catalogue, Internet and databases. Wireless computing allows students access from a laptop. The library also offers personal instructional support to students seeking collaborative assistance in appraising of literature, information management, publishing preparation or a variety of other areas in which the library staff could be of assistance to students.