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A Heart of the Campus for Students

By Blake Cooper

Published January 26, 2015

As the semester starts, you’ll notice some changes in the works at Capen’s Silverman Library.

Blake Cooper (UB Student, Class of 2016) is originally from Canandaigua, NY. He is studying Spanish, Linguistics and Comparative Literature, and beginning work on translating an Argentinian novel into English.

The third floor will be closed until November 2015 for renovations... but fear not! The Capen Cybrary from the third floor has been moved to the second floor in advance of the Spring 2015 semester, meaning there will be no difference in the number of available computers on campus.

The renovations are part of UB’s Heart of the Campus initiative, which aims to create, among other things, a “21st-century library experience” for students. The redesigned space will feature a Grand Reading Room for silent study, as well as technology-enabled spaces for collaborative and individual learning, an updated cybrary and a “tech-progressive” classroom. Social meeting spaces are also included in the plans.

According to Dean Hendrix, Assistant Director of University Libraries, the changes are for and about students.

“We are aware of many student complaints about Capen 3,” Dean offered, citing Facebook groups and Twitter accounts where students have vented about the facilities. “We’re devoting significant resources to enhancements for students and creating a space that students and the rest of the University can be proud of.”

“I’m tempted to call it the Library of the Future,” Dean said, cracking a smile. “But it’s not. It’s the Library of Now.”

In addition to the relocation of the Cybrary to the second floor, some of the seating and study areas from the third floor will be moving to the ground floor of the Lockwood Memorial Library. The Lockwood library will be open 24 hours a day during the renovations, and Dean explains that libraries are working with University Police and the Department of Parking and Transportation to ensure the safety and convenience of students during the renovations.

Learn more about the scope and philosophy of the Heart of the Campus initiative.