“Forget everything you think you know about academic libraries …”
This was the first instruction in the high concept brief issued to architects participating in the competitive design process of the new library.
It was the best starting point for the University to achieve its aspirations to develop a new library building as a key campus facility and as a 21st Century learning environment. These aspirations are embodied in the following principles:
The key design concepts for the building comprise:
- light and connection
- strong sense of place
The building design must embody these concepts while providing for the following:
- briefed accommodation
- constraints of the project budget
- strong relationship to the rest of the campus
- the principles defined by the Campus Development Plan 2004
Learner Centred Design
“Where knowledge counts, people count more than ever” (John Seely Brown).
Client “learning” spaces will form the central focus of the new library:
- 3,000 flexible, configurable study spaces based on new approaches to learning space design for new generations of students, including students with special needs, researchers and postgraduate students; attention to acoustic issues associated with individual v. interaction spaces
- extended hours operation – achieved with different building zones and minimisation of separate service points; minimal built in furniture
- wireless network and power everywhere for access to digital learning and information environments
- access to food and beverage services
- single, flexible staff area for 150 people (125 FTE)
- Bennett, S. (2006) ‘The choice for learning’ Journal of Academic Librarianship 32(1), pp. 3-13.
- Bennett, S. (2007) ‘First questions for designing higher education learning spaces’ Journal of Academic Librarianship (33)1, pp. 14-26.
- Brown, J. S. (2001) “Learning in the digital age” Papers from the Forum for the Future of Higher Education.
- Brown, M. & Long, P. (2006) “Trends in learning space design” in Oblinger, Learning Spaces, Ch. 9.
- Council on Library and Information Resources (2005) "Library as place: rethinking roles, rethinking space. Washington.
- Foote, S.M. (2004) Changes in library design: an architect’s perspective portal" Libraries and the academy 4(1), pp. 41-59.
- Joint Information Systems Committee (2006) Designing spaces for effective learning: a guide to 21st century learning space design.
- ‘Planning and Designing Technology-Rich Learning Spaces’ infoKit
- Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) for 80% of collection to reduce the floor space required by the print collections and improve service delivery
- first installation of its type in Australia
- open access shelving for 20% of collection to be protected by a theft detection system.
Environmentally Sustainable Design
Sustainability is considered to be a key aspect of the planning and design, and furniture and equipment selections, of the University’s capital projects.
As a principle, energy demand is to be minimised through the adoption of passive design solutions as a first priority, ahead of active solutions requiring energy consuming engineering systems.
Key sustainability principles to be considered in the concept design:
- maximise building and siting orientation opportunities
- appropriate solar access
- exploit natural ventilation and lighting opportunities
- design integration of sustainable systems
- appropriate material selection
- renewable in lieu of finite resources
- design to promote reduced power consumption
- alternative and low impact power sources
The current library caters to 5,500 visits per day. It is essential that selection of finishes, furniture, fixtures and equipment are sufficiently robust and wherever possible provide for a minimum forty year life span.
We're getting ready for the new Library Moving the Library to a new building is a huge challenge. The new Library offers a fresh environment with great potential to re-shape the way we do things to better serve YOU. Read on ...[pdf 831kb]
Trees, Shrubs & Wildlife: What's happening?
Ecological assessment of the biodiversity, flora and fauna of the new Library site has been carried out by a number of specialists and no threatened habitats or species have been identified in this area.
Read on ...[pdf 1.4mb]
Your Library on the Move: tagging 1.4m items
As the new Library takes shape, Macquarie University Library is already ' on the move' gearing up for the massive task of ...Read on [pdf 782kb]
Have your say ! Join our blog and make a contribution on what you think is important regarding the New Library
Share your story ! As part of the Library 2010 project, Library Friends are collecting Library Stories to commemorate the 40 year history of the current building. If you are interested in sharing your recollections, reflections or remembrances of our Library contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
This pathway has now been replaced and renamed Wally’s Walk. The saplings on the edges of the pathway have grown to magisterial proportions. These impressive, leafy plane trees now mask the concrete architectural brutalism of that original design. A green canopy that shields the eye and the sky. Read on…