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Students exiting the newly refurbished Library

A newly refurbished library reopened its doors to students at the University of St Andrews today (Monday 26 September 2011).

Students starting the new academic year were welcomed back by new state of the art facilities that are part of a £14m investment in the library.  Improvements include additional study spaces, smart self-service, new late night opening hours, a café and new furniture chosen by students themselves.

The space underwent renovation over the summer vacation in order to cause as little disruption to students as possible.

The redevelopment was carried out over an intensive sixteen week period, during which time staff were able to keep library services going for remaining students.

Over four short months, the Library’s entrance level has been transformed from its original 1970s design to a 21st Century design providing state-of-the-art academic facilities.

Speaking at the opening, Director of Library Services John MacColl commented, “We are delighted that such a big improvement has been made in such small time period and that the building is ready for the new semester.  Over the last sixteen weeks we have undertaken a complete renovation of level two, the entrance level of the library, effecting a ‘fast-forward’ from a 1970s academic library building to one which provides state-of-the-art facilities.

“This is just the first step in our long term plan to bring library facilities in line with the University’s reputation for excellence across teaching and research.  We are pushing ahead with plans for a new Special Collections facility, in order that our treasures – collections of major national and international significance for Scottish history, literature and the history of photography – will have a deserving home for the future.”

The initial revamp has provided 74 extra entrance level study spaces (334 in total), bookable study rooms, improved heating and lighting and a new 76-seat café, named Café 1413 in recognition of the University’s 600th anniversary campaign.

The re-opened Library will have extended opening hours – until 2 am Sundays to Thursdays and until midnight Fridays and Saturdays during term-time.

Much of the redevelopment has been carried out in line with student demand, with students being consulted throughout and given the opportunity to select the style of furniture in the main seating areas.

The project is the first phase of a long-term comprehensive programme to modernise the library and its collections.  From summer 2012 the second part of the redevelopment project will commence to improve levels 3 and 4, in line with the current improvements.

For more information, and photographs, on the redevelopment project please visit the blogsite http://libraryredevelopment.wordpress.com/

Users inside the newly refurbished Library

ENDS

Note to Picture Editors

Images of the redeveloped opening and space are available from the Press Office, contacts below.


Issued by the Press Office

Contact Gayle Cook, Senior Communications Manager, 01334 467227, email gec3@st-andrews.ac.uk

Ref: Library_reopening 260911

To view the latest University news, visit: www.st-andrews.ac.uk/news

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