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Work In Progress Construction updates.

Chaucey Work in Progress
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  • » Bryan Information Commons update

    By Barbara Burd

    As the construction phase approaches for the Bryan Information Commons, a 15,000-square-foot addition to the existing Kimbel Library, student involvement in planning is high. Construction is scheduled to begin on the $6 million addition this summer, with completion slated for summer 2011.

    A student advisory group has been instrumental in choosing the design and furnishings that students would like to see in this new space. The student group reviewed the layout of the new construction and made recommendations about what kinds of furniture they like. They suggested a mix of soft seating and collaborative work spaces.

    The entrance joining the Information Commons to the Kimbel Library will include an exhibit area, where the library can showcase faculty and student art, faculty publications or other exhibitions of interest. The first floor will have three glass-walled study rooms, one of which will have soft seating for a more relaxed study area; 12 high-tech, collaborative work spaces that can seat six to eight individuals; and approximately 30 individual computer workstations. Additional tables and a soft seating area complete the first floor design.

    As a direct response to student requests, the second floor will have a vending machine alcove that leads out to booth and café seating. This area will complement the current service available in JAVA City and will provide snacks and beverages to quell the late night munchies. The second floor “bridge” that connects the information commons to the library proper will be a glass structure with lots of sofas and chairs and a wonderful view of the campus. Five technology-rich study rooms will include large screen wall-mounted monitors, projection capabilities and interactive whiteboards. A combination of computer workstations and laptop work tables will fill the open area of the second floor.

    In designing the furniture layout for the Information Commons, students stressed the need for flexibility and for lots of electrical outlets to plug in laptops and other mobile devices. To accommodate this, all tables will be wired and almost all seating will be movable. E-boards throughout the building will provide information on computer availability, campus events and other relevant information. Self-check of library materials will allow students to carry books, videos and other materials from Kimbel Library over to the Bryan Information Commons and then, if necessary, to check them out prior to leaving the building.

    The Bryan Information Commons will be a brick and glass structure with expansive windows extending the entire height of the building to allow plenty of natural light. The student advisory group is excited about the design they’ve helped to create and eager for the campus to see the results of their work.

    The Bryan Information Commons is named for the Bryan family of Conway. A $1.8 million gift from the estate of Rebecca Randall Bryan in 2001 marked the largest single cash gift to CCU at that time.