The renovation of the Krannert Memorial Library will begin after the current semester ends. The overhaul will touch every floor of the library, including the basement and the computer labs. According to Director of the Library Matthew Shaw, the plan is to have all of the library renovations completed by the upcoming fall semester of 2015.
“This is a pretty ambitious project,” Shaw said, “but we have been working incredibly hard to get this done. So I don’t think we will have any issues.”
There will be new additions to the library along with improvements to existing features. The new additions will include a café on the first floor that will offer food options as well as coffee. Freshman community health major Cheyenne Kern hopes the café will offer healthy foods as well.
“Some healthier options would be nice, because I know at The Perk they serve a lot of muffins and cookies,” Kern said.“Sometimes they have fruit, but it would be nice to something not so sugar heavy.”
Sophomore Tyler Knierim, a double major in political science and international relations, looks forward to seeing the completed design of the library. Knierim said a more contemporary design will bring an updated look and feel to the university as a whole.
“I saw a diagram that had a picture of how they want the library to look when it’s done, and I really like the aesthetic look of it,” Knierim said. “Plus the café will be nice, too.”
As of now, the library’s only window space is on the north side of the building facing the Martin Hall parking lot and Cory Bretz Hall. According to Shaw, the plan for the new design includes adding windows to the east side of the library to give students a view over Smith Mall as well.
“When the library was last renovated, Smith Mall was just a parking lot,” Shaw said. “Now that it’s aesthetically pleasing out there, we want to give people the opportunity to have a good view while they are studying.”
Shaw said the library will offer more areas where study and project groups can work together. However, there will still be spaces where students can have peace and quiet to study and finish their individual work.
“We want the library to become more socially and technologically integrated,” Shaw said. “Students will be able to come here for the discovery of information all the way up to the final product that they are working on.”
The writing lab in the Sease Wing of the library will remain part of the library and possibly become even more integrated into it. Renovations also will bring a restroom to the first floor rather than students and others having to go to the second floor.
Shaw and the rest of library staff’s goal is to bring more convenience to those who use the library. The library will still be partially functioning for summer courses, according to Shaw. The online catalog will be entirely available, and a large chunk of its physical catalog will remain accessible to students.