As internet-based technologies continue to change our access to information, libraries have adapted and augmented their roles to suit the needs of their patrons. To meet the new expectations of physical library spaces, designers have relied on a few essential changes which can maximize use while minimizing physical storage space.
Regardless if a library is academic or civic, the trending growth towards an increasingly digital world means that physical media must be more efficiently organized to foster a fulfilling experience.
Below, you will find a list of a few critical changes that libraries must consider when designing their space to meet the requirements of their visitors.
Flexible and modular storage systems create library study spaces that are transient and customizable, suited to whatever situation may arise. Using library carts and rolling shelving systems, library atriums and arcades can be opened for exhibitions, book readings, academic conventions, and many other high-priority events that may demand such space. Academic settings greatly benefit from such adaptable organization systems, as the multi-use spaces shift to meet the needs of the student body and faculty alike.
High-bay library storage excels at optimizing warehouse-style archival storage and retrieval. It allows for increased vertical storage and reduction in shelving width without compromising storage density. The vertical storage model permits the storage of large art pieces, high-density literary works, and various other forms of media with ease and integrity.
Shelving and archival space can take up prime real estate your library space, minimizing space for other attractions. Rows of shelving can compartmentalize and restrict patron flow to certain areas of a library, or confuse and disorient patrons searching for a specific file. Utilizing high density storage shelving minimizes the rows of library shelving racks while enhancing the functionality and aesthetics of the implemented storage units.
An important consideration to make regarding archival storage is its protection from disaster. With paper making up a majority of archival materials, misfiring sprinkler systems could mean the end of an unprotected archive. However, with water-deflecting shelving systems, your archive can be protected and easily recovered from such accidents, free of severe water damage.
You can easily optimize archival retrieval methods using Spacesaver’s TUSC Control application, which allows you to remotely move motorized shelving and locate stored materials. The application has built-in organization tools, and allows you to easily find and open access to stored goods. This minimizes retrieval times and allows for quick, easy access from any library employee’s mobile phone or tablet.
Maximize library seating space, communal areas, and aesthetic presentation by creating off-site storage solutions. Creating high-bay, high-density storage for archival materials will free much storage space for higher-priority materials and declutter your library space. While smaller libraries may find off-site storage unnecessary, larger and high-volume libraries may find this solution to be quite advantageous.
While there are many ways to update your library for the new decade, we feel that these innovations from Spacesaver should be on the top of any designer’s list. The aforementioned products open spaces up, condense storage areas, and protect documents from potential damage. To survive in the world of digital information technology, libraries must consider implementing these spatial measures to ensure a successful future.
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