JF Library progress continues

Construction — Contractors from Branch and Associates, Inc. work from sun-up to sun-down on the long-awaited Jerry Falwell Library, scheduled to open fall 2013. Photo credit: Ruth Bibby

Construction on the long-anticipated Jerry Falwell Library is well underway, with new and exciting updates constantly being made available.

Dean of the Integrated Resource Learning Center Carl Merat oversees the planning team for the library and was eager to give updates on ground-breaking technology such as the inclusion of the Automated Storage Retrieval System (ASRS), or the “robot,” and to share a little bit about how it will work.

“The library completed its first round of preparing books for transfer to the robotic system this summer,” Merat said. “The last four digits of each book’s barcode number is being written on the top spine of our books for easy location in the bins that will hold them in the robotic system. Bins of various heights will (be) loaded into racks in a large vault in the new building where the robots will retrieve them when a request is submitted from the library’s LUCAS catalog.”

The new, state-of-the-art, user-friendly technology to be included in the library is sure to add flare and popularity to Liberty’s campus and its students.

According to the Information Services website, “the system is easy to use and fascinating to watch. Requests for materials can be made via the online catalog from any computer with an Internet connection. Within minutes of receiving the order, a robotic crane will retrieve the materials and deliver them to the Customer Service Center. The patron can then pick up the desired item from this service point.”

Photo credit: Ruth Bibby

Merat explained that “little-used” books have been temporarily put in storage, but will eventually have a place in the robotic system. The process of moving these books into storage will begin again in January.

“The lowest level (will be) primarily for receiving and mechanical services. It will be entirely underground except for the loading dock area,” Merat said. “The next level will be Level 0, and it will be the lowest public level with a quiet retreat-like study area, the Jerry Falwell Museum, the Library’s archives, a large multi-purpose room, and a large, open atrium with stairs leading to the main level.”

According to Merat, there will be two entrances on this level, one from the lakeside and one from the north on the Reber-Thomas side. The decking for Level 1 is being constructed now, and the contractor plans to pour the floor for that level this week.

Merat said that this will be the main entrance from the lawn area behind DeMoss.

According to Liberty University’s Information Services, the food court that many have been talking about will be on two floors and will be located at the north end of the main wing. The entrance and exit to the food court will be separate from that of the main library. Vending machines will also be set up in designated spots around the library.

The Jerry Falwell Library is set to open in the fall of 2013.

For a historic timeline of the library’s development see LibertyChampion.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *