|Vol. XV, no. 1||TCU Library Newsletter, Web Edition||November 2002|
Library Renovations - by James Lutz
Renovation and change have been abundant at the Library during the last year. During the 2001 winter holidays the Library embarked on an ambitious project to combine the Information Services computing help desk with the Library’s computer lab service desk and the reference desk. A wall was removed and the computer lab was doubled from 50 to 104 computers offering not only basic computing but also more advanced multimedia authoring and manipulation capabilities. A massive shift occurred as stacks were moved into a new scheme to accommodate the combined desk, computer lab expansion, and to retain as many study tables and chairs as possible. The “one-stop shopping” capability that this combined service desk provides has been positively received.
In the spring the music library saw several years work culminate with the audio center renovation and the new audio and video distribution facilities. Painting, carpeting, ceiling tile complimented the new carrels, tables, and chairs. While these cosmetic changes were needed the equipment purchased from Audio Visual Solutions now offers the music library the capabilities to distribute DVD, CD, Laser Disc, VHS, cassette tape, DAT, and LPs in 33, 45, and 78 formats to the carrels for viewing and listening. Running through a digital matrix system and managed by computer software the user can not only listen and view but can remotely control the items they are listening or viewing with some exceptions. The distribution system allows not only single users to access a single work but can handle multiple users accessing a single work.
In addition to the carrels for individual users space was made available to install a teaching station. The teaching station accommodates sixteen users for listening and viewing materials played by the teacher in the various formats. There is also a musical instrument digital interface (MIDI) setup with computer and synthesizer keyboard.
Through generous support by Mr. and Mrs. Marvin Gearhart the periodical reading room was renovated with new paint, lighting, electrical outlets, color matched chairs in the original 1920’s style to match the refurbished tables (see photos), having the wood paneling cleaned, and adding plants. A new layout was achieved through hard work from the periodicals department and several staff members on loan from acquisitions. All stacks were moved away from the windows to the room’s north end and comfortable seating was placed near the windows. Both alcoves were reworked to provide study seating on the north end where the microform machines were located and comfortable seating located in the newspaper alcove.While the Periodical Reading Room renovation was occurring over 23,335 square feet of carpet was replaced. The carpet in the reference room, circulation, reference offices, interlibrary loan office, government information office, periodical reading room, and the music library was replaced. In many locations the carpet that was replaced was twenty years old and badly worn. While carpeting was out several areas were repainted and the Government Information offices received new furniture.