The Bob Squad Monthly: Building stuff you may know, may not know, or would like to know but may not have heard about yet.
Bob Yerkey provides the following update on facilities projects, building maintenance and development, and other progress happening at the Libraries.
First, let me add a little info to things you already know about. You already know about the carpet installation on the third floor and office areas, about the installation of the Reference/Instruction Librarian offices, the creation of the Learning Commons and the integration of the Miller Writing Center, Academic Support services, and OIT tech support. However, did you know that every one of the one hundred and seventy two ranges on the third floor were moved, books and all, at least two times and in many cases three or four times? Each range is about twenty one feet long and has an average weight of two thousand pounds. In eighteen days a crew of seven guys moved around five hundred sixteen tons. In addition, almost thirty two thousand square yards of carpet was handled. To create the almost fifteen thousand six hundred square feet of space for the Learning Commons JP, his students, and many of you shifted eight hundred twenty thousand items. We also had to disassemble and remove thirty two shelving ranges. Facilities had to run wiring for over three hundred new electrical outlets and we ordered, received, installed and arranged over $300,000.00 worth of new furniture. A crew of three guys built the Reference/Instruction Librarian offices in five days.
Now let me update you on a couple of projects that have started. We’re finally getting a new fire alarm system throughout the building. The new system will feature addressable smoke detectors, a voice alarm system, and an automated alert option that is tied in to the University’s warning system. The addressable smoke detectors should eliminate the false alarms we’ve become so famous for. The major cause of our false alarms is dust accumulation in the old smoke detectors. Once dust builds up to a certain point they alarm and the building goes into an evacuation. The new ones will send three electronic messages to the contractor warning that they are getting dirty. The contractor will run a list of dirty detectors on a daily basis and can simply replace the dirty head with a clean one then take the dirty one back to the shop for a thorough cleaning. If the first message is missed or ignored a second message is sent. The contractor is supposed to respond to the second message within twenty four hours. If a third message is sent the contractor has four hours to respond before the detector goes into alarm mode. The bottom line is that we really should not have any more false alarms due to dust accumulation. If the system does alarm, the fire department will know exactly where to go to verify the threat. They will no longer have to wander around an entire floor trying to spot which detector is alarming so evacuations should be cleared much quicker. Another project that will be running concurrently with the alarm system is the addition of over six hundred new electrical outlets. Each column in the main seating areas throughout the building will have four duplexes installed. They will also be adding outlets to the columns along the windows, core drilling in the third floor Graduate Student/Faculty Reading room, and wiring some of our carrels for power. These two projects will take six to nine months to complete and are being done almost entirely by our Facilities In-House Construction team.
After all that, here’s some stuff you probably haven’t heard about yet. Sometime late this summer the Atrium will be painted, the neon lighting will be removed, and a series of large, colorful, sound baffling banners will be hung. This project is currently in the planning stage but will entail the temporary installation of a huge amount of scaffolding in the atrium. It should be quite interesting to watch and the end result will be a really good looking atrium that will not be quite the “sound chimney” that it currently is. Also in the planning stages at facilities is a project to upgrade the HVAC in Special collections which will stabilize the temperature and humidity at recommended levels for archival collections. This project will also include the re-carpeting of the Special Collection/Archives area. Another project on the horizon is to provide further protection to our server room by adding it and the equipment needed to support it to the backup generator. This project is in the beginning planning stages and will probably not be started until next year. Last, but certainly not least is to complete the re-carpeting of the building. Looks like we’ll be finishing off the re-carpeting this Christmas break.
Keep an eye out for more updates.