Constructing Library Buildings That Work— eEditions e-book

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  • Description
  • Table of Contents
  • About the author
  • Reviews

When it’s time to start planning for a renovation or construction project, you don’t need a book that covers everything from A to Z. Instead you need a concentrated set of tools and techniques that will guide you and your team to find the best solutions for your specific project. That’s exactly what library building expert Schlipf provides in his new book, which will be a key resource for library directors, administrators, board members, trustees, and planning professionals. Pinpointing the elements that make library buildings functional, in this book readers will find

  • a streamlined organization of the text that enables quick consultation and facilitates collaboration;
  • concise coverage of the essentials of the library construction process, including who does what, how things work, and how to stay out of trouble along the way;
  • advice on important planning and workflow considerations such as site selection, schematic design, funding, design development, the bidding process, construction, and post-construction occupancy;
  • discussion of the characteristics of successful library buildings—buildings that are easy to maintain, welcoming to people with disabilities, have less trouble-prone restrooms, and provide security for users, staff, and collections; and
  • an overview of bad ideas in library architecture, with pointed guidance on how to steer clear of them from the very beginning of your project. 

This powerful primer will help everyone involved in a library building project stay focused on the task at hand.


Part I         Basics of the Library Construction Process

  • Chapter 1    Basic Building Configuration
  • Chapter 2    Programming
  • Chapter 3    Hiring Architects
  • Chapter 4     Site Selection
  • Chapter 5     The Design and Construction Process
  • Chapter 6     Funding
  • Chapter 7     Remodeling vs. New Construction
  • Chapter 8     Converting Non-Library Spaces

Part II         Characteristics of Successful Library Buildings

  • Chapter 9     Accessibility
  • Chapter 10     Acoustics
  • Chapter 11     Efficient Operation
  • Chapter 12     Electrical Wiring
  • Chapter 13     Elevators and Staircases
  • Chapter 14     Expandability
  • Chapter 15     Flexibility
  • Chapter 16     Furniture
  • Chapter 17     HVAC Systems
  • Chapter 18     Lighting
  • Chapter 19     Meeting and Program Rooms
  • Chapter 20     Plumbing
  • Chapter 21     Security
  • Chapter 22     Service Desks
  • Chapter 23    Shelving
  • Chapter 24     Staff Workspaces
  • Chapter 25    Storage Spaces
  • Chapter 26    Good and Bad Ideas in Library Architecture 

Fred Schlipf

Fred Schlipf has been hanging out in library buildings since the early 1940s (at about the age of four, he turned out all the lights in the Detroit Lakes (Minnesota) Public Library one evening—a happy moment that is still both bright and dark in his memory), and has been working for libraries and teaching about libraries and consulting on library buildings since he was 17. He’s been a library school faculty member for over 50 years, and he spent nearly 33 years as director of The Urbana Free Library, the public library of Urbana, Illinois (just down the street from the University of Illinois). He’s done formal building consulting for between 150 and 200 libraries and quick consulting for many more, and he visits library buildings everywhere he goes. He has a BA from Carleton College and an MA and PhD from the Graduate Library School of the University of Chicago. He has served on dozens of committees and task forces of the American Library Association, Illinois State Library, Illinois Library Association, local library groups in Illinois, and the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America. He was Illinois Librarian of the Year in 2000.

"The reader is methodically taken through the various steps of any library renovation or building project from considering the shape of the building, hiring architectural firms, and funding, to the materials used, staff spaces, and even a final word about the 'good and bad ideas of library architecture' (p. 65) ... Constructing Library Buildings That Work contains many facets that should inform both the veteran library renovation committee member as well as the novice member. Librarians in both public libraries and academic libraries will find information that can inform their pursuit of a more pleasing library space for themselves and their patrons."
— Jennifer Matthews, Collection Strategy Librarian, Rowan University