University Library Relocation

University of Cambridge

The project was to combine CARET (Centre for Applied Research in Educational Technologies) with the library’s Electronic Services and Systems (ESS) staff and facilities to form a new combined Digital Services Department.  This involved moving CARET into the library and creating a new single space for the combined teams to be housed.


To allow the departments to combine, a feasibility study was undertaken to identify teams and areas within the library affected by the changes.  The project evolved into a phased refurbishment of 5 spaces to allow the library to continue to function whilst the works were undertaken.  Key to the scheme was the refurbishment and reopening of the 1935 central Catalogue hall and side rooms to rehouse the Readers Service areas, which in turn freed up a larger space for the new Digital Services staff.

The main challenges of the project were the programming of department moves to allow a continuous service and avoid wider disruption to the daily use of the library.  This developed into enabling works to form suitable decant spaces and a 12 week rolling programme of refurbishment and department moves, including significant weekend working.  The reopening of the Catalogue Hall was required for the start of the University term and all dates were required to be programmed around this date.

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