MSEL to Shift Part of Book Collection to Off-Campus Site For Ed Rosenfeld, the past several years have been something like trying to fit a round peg into an increasingly shrinking round hole. Rosenfeld, the associate director for programs at the Milton S. Eisenhower Library, and his colleagues have struggled with the problem of how to make nearly 2 million books fit into a space designed for only 1 million; how to create a comfortable environment for thousands of students and faculty each year in a physical plant expected to accommodate half that number. It has been sometimes painfully clear that something had to give. And beginning early next year, some things will. Working with Provost Joseph Cooper and a 17-member Faculty Library Advisory Committee, Rosenfeld has developed a plan to shift by March 1996 600,000 low-use books from the Eisenhower Library building to an office building about 25 minutes from the Homewood campus, in Moravia Park. The library will transfer to the off-campus site each year, thereafter, about 40,000 volume--the equivalent of what it acquires annually. Rosenfeld, who chaired the library's task force, noted that the off-campus shelving will ease the crowding in the book stacks, provide space to return to the library from the New Engineering Building the Government Publications/Maps/Law Department and make room for renovations. "The library collection has been growing significantly, but no physical space has magically been added to our building to house it all," said interim library director Stephen Nichols. "This plan is a creative and very workable solution that has been designed to maintain a high level of user service, so that materials can be brought to the library within 24 hours of their request. And the materials will be situated in a modern space selected specifically to ensure the material's safety." "For several years one of our goals has been to make the library more inviting and easier to use," Rosenfeld said. "The M-level new-book area, computer access to information, the Research Consultation Office, the compact shelving and now the transfer of certain materials are all part of our long-range plan to achieve this goal." The primary questions Rosenfeld knows he will have to answer are what materials will be moved and how will users get them quickly when they need them. "This transfer is not indiscriminate," he said. "We are working with the academic departments to refine the lists of materials that can be moved off campus with the least amount of user inconvenience," he said. "And all material identified for transfer will be tagged in Janus. If a user wants that material to stay, he or she will have time to bring any concerns to the attention of the resource services librarian for the affected discipline." He noted that the library will continuously announce the materials being transferred before they are moved. To get more information about the transfer, or to offer suggestions or comments, contact the Resource Services Department at 516-8336.
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